The former Liverpool captain will continue his coaching career in Saudi Arabia following his departure from Aston Villa last October.
Steven Gerrard explained the “family feeling” at Al Ettifaq was one of the factors behind his move to the Saudi Pro League club.
The 43-year-old has accepted a job as Al Ettifaq’s newest manager. He previously declined an offer to join the Dammam-based team. However, he changed his mind and signed a three-year contract last week.
“When I went to Saudi I got a real family feeling. It made me actually feel welcomed,” Gerrard said on Al Ettifaq’s Twitter last Sunday.
“There are three things I always consider in order. It needs to be right for my family first and foremost. We have to be excited and motivated by the challenge.
“[Secondly] The football project needs to be ambitious. It needs to be for the right reasons. Then you need to feel secure with the contract, but this comes at the very end.”
On Monday, Gerrard took charge of his first training session at Al Ettifaq. The Commandos are in Croatia for the start of the pre-season. They are looking to improve on last season’s seventh-place finish in the Saudi Pro League under their new boss.
Gerrard follows in the footsteps of his former Liverpool teammate Robbie Fowler. Fowler became the head coach of the Saudi second-division team Al Qadsiah on Thursday.
Al Ettifaq marks Gerrard’s third job as a manager in senior football. The Englishman previously enjoyed a successful two-and-a-half-year spell with Rangers. He led the Gers to their first Scottish Premiership title in 10 years in 2021.
Gerrard’s last coaching role was at Premier League club Aston Villa from November 2021 to October 2022.
England Under-20 boss Ian Foster will join Gerrard in the Middle East as his assistant manager.
Ambition. Vision. Football.
— Ettifaq Club (@Ettifaq_EN) July 9, 2023