Steven Gerrard
Gerrard calls time on playing career after leaving LA Galaxy. Getty

Former Liverpool and England captain Steven Gerrard today (Thursday 24 November) brought the curtains down on his illustrious career, announcing his retirement from the game.

For 13 years, the midfielder wore the captain's armband at Anfield, scoring 186 goals and winning three League Cups, two FA Cups and one Champions League. While a new career in coaching or punditry surely beckons, IBTimes UK looks back on his most iconic moments as a player.

Stunning the Kop against Olympiacos

Back in the 2004-05 season, Liverpool's Champions League campaign looked to be coming to a premature end. Having won just two of their five group games, qualification hopes were slim, with Gerrard's absence in four of those games a telling issue.

Welcoming the Greek side to Anfield, Liverpool needed to win by two goals to secure their place in the knockout stages of the competition. With four minutes left on the clock, the captain stepped up with a typically resplendent strike, a goal that launched them towards one of the greatest Champions League triumphs ever seen.

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard is mobbed by teammates after netting against Olympiakos. Getty

One night in Istanbul

After group stage heroics and dismissing Bayer Leverkusen, Juventus and Chelsea en route to the final, Liverpool crumbled miserably in the first-half against AC Milan as Kaka, Andrea Pirlo and Hernan Crespo tore them to ribbons. While Rafa Benitez must take credit for the tactical changes at half-time that resuscitated his side that night, it was Gerrard who personified the revival on the pitch, sparking that obscene sixminute spell where Liverpool struck three times to level the game.

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard inspired Liverpool to European success in 2005. Getty

2006 FA Cup final

The greatest FA Cup final of the modern age, and it was Gerrard who provided its defining moment. Having already scored once and provided another for Djibril Cisse, his efforts looked to have been in vain with the final whistle looming, as West Ham United led following Paul Konchesky's freak goal. In injury time, too weary to drive forward again, Gerrard had one last throw of the dice. Letting fly from 35 yards, his effort broke Hammers' hearts and once again revived Liverpool. Like in Istanbul a year earlier, his divine intervention drove Liverpool through extra-time and to victory on penalties.

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard stuns West Ham to rescue Liverpool (again). Getty

Kissing the camera at Old Trafford

A persistent thorn in the side of Liverpool's arch-rivals, Gerrard had already become well versed in damaging United's prospects. In March 2009, he arrived at Old Trafford looking to halt Manchester United's march to a third consecutive title. With Fernando Torres tormenting Nemanja Vidic, a wretched day for Sir Alex Ferguson was compounded by Gerrard's reaction having tucked a penalty past Edwin van der Sar, racing over towards the Sky Sports cameras and planting a kiss on the lens; one of the most iconic celebrations of the last 10 years. Goals from Fabio Aurelio and Andrea Dossena added to United's misery that afternoon, much to the delight of the Liverpool skipper.

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard's celebration at Old Trafford was just as memorable as the 4-1 scoreline. Getty

The Chelsea option

As the Roman Abramovich era at Stamford Bridge lurched into action, Chelsea attempted to lure Gerrard down south in 2004. After failing in that attempt, they returned a year later. Just six weeks after lifting the European Cup, the Liverpool captain shocked his city by handing in a transfer request. Jose Mourinho later recalled: We did everything to try to sign him and it was almost there. I was dreaming of Makélélé, Gerrard and Lampard in midfield. We were playing in a proper triangle without a No10 and playing Maka in front of the defenders. Me, Mr Abramovich and Peter Kenyon at that time, we dreamed of that."

Gerrard's faced intolerable pressure in his home city as talk of the move emerged with some fans burning their shirts with his name and iconic no. 8 adorned on the back. The storm came to an end when the skipper eventually signed a new contract reportedly worth £100,000-a-week.

Steven Gerrard
For a short while in 2005, it looked like Gerrard would line-up with John Terry for club and country. Getty

The slip

"This does not f*****g slip" Gerrard bellowed to his teammates following their thrilling 3-2 win over Manchester City, another win during an imperious run of form that fuelled their best title challenge in 25 years during the 2013-14 campaign. That stirring speech to his teammates caught by television microphones would ultimately backfire, as often happens in the game, with the Liverpool skipper slipping in a decisive game against Chelsea, allowing Demba Ba to race through and score. Liverpool went onto lose that match 2-0; providing Manchester City with the opportunity to seize the title from their grasp.

Steven Gerrard
Chelsea fans never let Gerrard forget his unfortunate slip. Getty

The goodbye

His 709th game for the Reds may have not ended the way he would have dreamed, of with Liverpool falling to a 3-1 defeat to Crystal Palace. But that result was largely irrelevant. Liverpool supporters arrived at Anfield hours before kick-off that May afternoon to pay tribute to their departing hero, who received a guard of honour from both sets of teams as he made his way onto the pitch.

After the match, the Liverpool team and staff donned club jerseys emblazoned with his name and number as he emotionally bid farewell to his home crowd.

Steven Gerrard
Gerrard left Liverpool in 2015. Getty