In the unlikely event that you’ve spent the last few weeks orbiting planet Earth, trying to spot the Great Wall of China as you devour another sachet of powdered eggs and have just this morning returned to terra firma, you may be unaware that Steven Gerrard will tomorrow play his last game for Liverpool at Anfield.
Yes, after 17 years, the Kop’s favourite son will pull on the red of his boyhood club for the final time in front of those who value his existence even higher than that of their own loved ones against Crystal Palace.
The Reds assume understandable short-price favouritism for the fixture, available to back at 9/20 to slay the Eagles, who famously scuppered the Merseysiders’ hopes of hoisting a first Premier League title at the exact same stage of the previous campaign.
Another act of Palace spoiling the party can be backed at 6/1, while there’s a generous 2/1 on offer for the sentimental masses to snap up about Gerrard scoring in a home win.
If clichéd, ‘written in the script’ type punts don’t float your betting boat, though, the odds hounds at bwin.com have compiled a string of specials for the fixture, our favourites we’ve sounded out below:
The shortest price is for Gerrard to be subbed off in the closing stages, with the bookies anticipating an early withdrawal so sufficient homage can be paid to the skipper’s 17 years of service via the medium of a standing ovation.
This is where the tears are forecast to flow, but unfortunately, there is no price attributed to such an eventuality.
Despite this, there is a way money can be made through the 34-year-old turning on the waterworks, assuming the horror of reliving the memories associated with the two long-shot offerings in this market will be gruesome enough to spark a crying fit.
Gerrard slipping and it contributing directly to a Palace goal, just as his infamous stumble enabled Chelsea’s Demba Ba to bag at Anfield last season pays out at 40/1, identical to him passing to an opponent who goes on to score, as he did Thierry Henry in a 2-1 Liverpool loss at Arsenal in 2006.
An eighth Liverpool red card of his career in his final home game is a 25/1-rated occurrence, while a converted penalty in front of the Kop is on offer at 14/1.
Other highlights include 33/1 about a hat-trick, 6/1 for a brace and 12/1 that he bags in the final five minutes.