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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Gerrard fears Suarez exit

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard believes the Reds need to qualify for next season's Champions League if they want to keep hold of striker Luis Suarez.

Steven Gerrard: Nothing but praise for his manager
Gerrard fears Suarez could request a release to a top four club

Gerrard, 32, heaped praise on the Uruguayan after he took his season tally to 16 goals with a first-half goal in Liverpool's 5-0 rout of Norwich on Saturday. 

Brendan Rodgers' side moved within seven points of fourth-placed Tottenham with the victory and are still focused on qualifying for the Champions League.

Gerrard is confident that Suarez will remain at Anfield, but he believes a player of the striker's quality could demand a move to a team in Europe's elite competition.

"I know he's recently signed a long-term contract. I know that he's comfortable and he's happy here. But I think that's a question for Luis to answer," Gerrard told Sky's Goals on Sunday. "Only he knows what his ambitions and dreams are. He's gone on record recently and said he's really happy and comfortable here.

"Hopefully we can put a fight on from now until the end of the season to finish fourth, and make the decision for him. But Luis Suarez deserves to be in the Champions League. I think everyone has to admit that."

Gerrard was honoured by the Football Writers' Association at a gala tribute dinner in London on Sunday and was hailed by team-mate Jamie Carragher as a Liverpool legend.

"I think we are in the presence of the greatest player ever to play for Liverpool," Carragher said. "People will say I am biased because we are good friends and because of the trophies we have won together, but it is a fair accolade to give him.

"There are guys like Kenny [Dalglish], Graeme Souness, Ian Rush, all world-class players, but the difference was they were in a world-class team - and Stevie has not played in a world-class team.

"Stevie's one strength is he has no weakness, he can run, tackle, pass and score goals. Football is a team game, but special players do special things at special times, and that is Steven Gerrard."

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