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Brendan Rodgers today outlined why Jamie Carragher remains an invaluable component in his Liverpool plans – and revealed how he hopes to convince the veteran defender to prolong his playing career.
The No.23 - who will celebrate his 35th birthday later this month - has made just 20 appearances for the Reds so far this season.
However, Rodgers insists Carragher's experience means he retains a vital role within his squad - both on and off the field.
The boss said: "He's unbelievable. I've been fortunate enough to work with top European players in my time. The will and desire of this guy is remarkable. I love every minute of working with him.
"It has not been easy for him [not playing in every game], but he's from the old school. He's got values and ethics. We communicate a lot, talk about football and life in general.
"He is always there for me to rely on with his experience of the club. He turns out every day and I'm sure there are days that are difficult for him, when he doesn't play.
"Jamie and Steven Gerrard have been the best players here over a long period. Perhaps over a year to 18 months he hasn't played as many games as he would have liked.
"I recognise his qualities on the field but, equally important, I recognise him as a man off the field. I hope he feels very much part of the family we have here.
"He is a wonderful example to any player, absolutely incredible. He has still got a few years left in him for sure."
On the prospect of getting Carragher to continue playing beyond the end of his current Liverpool contract, Rodgers is in no doubt about how much he'd like to retain the services of the defender.
He said: "A lot depends on what route he chooses to go down. I know he is interested in the coaching side but I know he also enjoys the media side.
"We have had loose discussions in terms of where he is at. We decided we'd have a chat after Christmas. There is no doubt I want him to stay as a player because he still has a lot to offer."
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