Liverpool: When Steven Gerrard moves, he moves far, and despite signing for only the second club in his career, he is now 8,500 km away from his home here.
That did not stop his fans following the fortunes of the Anfield icon with all eyes in his home city focused on Gerrard's debut game for his new club LA Galaxy, which concluded in the early hours of Sunday, reports Xinhua.
The immediate response from Bruce Arena, manager of Gerrard's new club, was poetic music to the ears of his followers back home.
"His first time out was very encouraging. He looked like he belonged and his leadership was real good. He won some tackles and helped create some chances. He could have had a goal. Steven played well," Arena said.
Gerrard played the first 45 minutes of the game, a key role in LA Galaxy's 2-1 victory in their friendly International Champions Cup over Mexican side Club America. He came close to scoring after 22 minutes when he surged into the penalty area, but his left-footed shot was blocked by the Mexican goalkeeper Hugo Gonzalez.
The Red flag of Anfield was flying high though as another former Liverpool star, Robbie Keane scored one of Galaxy's two goals.
Ahead of the game, Gerrard had said: "You'll see I've still got some energy left, irrespective of what some people have said back in the UK."
After the game, Gerrard said: "It was good to get 45 minutes under my belt and I'll keep getting better and better and the more I get used to my teammates, I'll improve. Physically it was tough. I haven't played a competitive match for six or seven weeks, so it was very important that I got out there and got 45 minutes."
Here, media quoted Arena saying he was satisfied with his new signing's debut but said they would have to monitor how Gerrard recovered from his first run-out for a couple of months. The expectation is Gerrard will play his first Major League Soccer (MLS) match when the Galaxy host San Jose Earthquakes on Friday.
One Gerrard fan called Dangster reading the match report in the Liverpool Echo commented: "Heart breaking to read", which attracted a response from another Anfield supporter with an assuring: "Do not worry Dangster he will be back home in 18 months".
They are pinning their hopes of that old adage: you can take the player out of Anfield, but you can never take Anfield out of the player. For many in Liverpool, the hope for countdown to his return to the Kop army has already started.