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Saturday, May 18, 2013
Jamie Carragher eyes coaching career

Press Association

Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher will bring the curtain down on a 16-year playing career Sunday, but he has not ruled out making a return to the game in a coaching capacity.

The 35-year-old, due to lead Liverpool out on his 737th appearance for the club against QPR, will become a television pundit next season. However, he accepts nothing will ever replace the buzz of the dressing room and the only job that will come close to that would be as a coach.

"I am sure I will (miss it). I love the dressing room and getting yourself up for big games," he said. "There is nothing better than being successful and achieving things with your mates -- they were great times for us. It is very difficult to replace that whatever job you go into. The closest is probably coaching and managing so I suppose if I do miss it so much I will look to get back in at some stage."

Manager Brendan Rodgers said he will miss his regular chats with Carragher about football but hoped he would not be lost to the game in the long run.

Chairman Tom Werner has already said the door is always open for the Bootle-born defender to return in some capacity and Rodgers echoed that.

"Over the course of the next two to three years he will look to decide what he wants to do," the Reds boss said. "There is no doubt if you are a footballer with the passion he has you are going to miss it. You are never going to take the football out of him.

"He has never ruled (coaching) out but it is not at the forefront of his mind at the moment. I hope one day in the future we can look at that side. I think he has a great deal to offer on the coaching side but I think there is a natural break off where he needs to go have a period with his family and then he will renew his motivation. You never know what the future holds."

First and foremost, Carragher has a match to get through.

Liverpool plans to mark his retirement with a guard of honor from teams, a Kop mosaic and presentations from Ian Callaghan -- the only man ahead of Carragher in terms of Liverpool appearances -- and injured captain Steven Gerrard.

The center back would not have wanted the fuss but did admit his final game had been playing on his mind recently -- especially as it is at Anfield.

"I've never pulled a muscle in my life really so it hasn't affected training but I was more worried about getting sent off, especially last week at Fulham," he told talkSPORT. "I had a little word with (referee) Mark Halsey to put a seed in his mind so if he thought I was misbehaving he should have a word with me and I'd try to calm down. It never came to that last weekend and I can enjoy it now."

Liverpool is guaranteed to finish seventh -- one place better than last year and closer to the top four than 12 months ago, when finishing 17 points adrift cost Kenny Dalglish his job.

"We might not have won a trophy but there are other measures for us this year to see that there has been progress," Rodgers said. "We are in the top four teams for goals scored this season, which is progress, and in terms of goals conceded we are in the top six (lowest). But I know as well as anyone this is a club that wants to be winning trophies and in the future we very much hope to do that."

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