This story has been reproduced from today's media. It does not necessarily represent the position of Liverpool Football Club.
As the tributes multiply ahead of his Anfield farewell this May, several images will linger in the greatest hits package of Jamie Carragher's tackles, blocks and last-ditch interventions, writes Chris Bascombe.
Inevitably, all roads will lead to Istanbul in 2005, when Carragher's cramp-ridden body gave way following another timely lunge.
But this most poignant moment was not the result of denying Andrei Shevchenko or Hernan Crespo in extra time of that exhausting evening. It was when Carragher was on the podium alongside Steven Gerrard, the captain's chief lieutenant about to take his rightful place in the iconic picture that would be wired around the world.
As Gerrard took the Champions League trophy and the red ticker tape showered the jubilant Liverpool squad, Carragher moved towards a prime position when his body gave way. While he was creased up in agony, the emblematic photograph placed Gerrard alongside Spanish reserve Josemi.
Carragher was the Liverpool legend unseen, lost in the background, nursing the aches and pains of putting his body on the line for the club. True to form, his retirement statement on Thursday was utterly devoid of fanfare.
"I'm making this announcement now because I don't want the manager or the club to be answering questions on my future when I've already decided what I am going to do," he said. "I will be fully committed between now and the end of the season to doing the very best for Liverpool Football Club, as I've done my entire career since joining aged just nine years old.
"I won't be making any further comment on this decision until the end of the season. All our focus and concentration should be on achieving the best possible finish in the league this season and trying to win the last remaining trophy we are competing in."
There was never any fuss with Carragher. He just played consistently well, fully committed, wherever a succession of managers asked him to. No fuss, no histrionics, no niggling calf and thigh strains causing the occasional absences. (Carragher refused to get on a stretcher when he broke his leg at Blackburn in 2003, wanted to play on with a dislocated shoulder in 2010 and, in 2007, played for several weeks with a punctured lung.)
He thinks it is embarrassing to miss a game through injury. From his early days he has baulked at the idea of being unavailable and been mortified by the prospect of having to receive treatment on the pitch.
He admits this stemmed from a fear of losing his place in his early years, as a succession of defenders who could have turned him into a squad player were signed.
They all came and went because Roy Evans, Gérard Houllier and Rafael Benítez recognised Carragher as a far more gifted footballer than some ever gave him credit for.
There is incredulity, too, when Carragher's career is viewed as a triumph of the heart rather than technique, an unfair assessment that also followed his most comparable, old-school predecessor, Tommy Smith. "You don't play 700 games for Liverpool if you can't pass the ball," Carragher said recently.
Carragher is no limited player who made the best of himself. He has been at the top of his generation since being accepted into Lilleshall as a teenager. He thrived as a striker in his youth, then a midfielder, later as a full-back and then centre-half.
With Gerrard, he is the embodiment of the modern Liverpool. Crucially, those two have ensured the bond between the players and The Kop has remained intact, despite times when it seemed to be in danger of disconnection.
It is also true Carragher is one of Liverpool's greatest talkers, on and off the pitch. Other than Bill Shankly, it is hard to imagine anyone in Anfield history quoted more extensively. That is why TV companies have bid for his services. Although many think he will become a coach and future manager, the appetite is not yet there to do so.
He held meetings with Brendan Rodgers last week, when he was asked to stay on beyond this season. But the break from Anfield will be, professionally speaking, absolute.
It is at Anfield on a match day where the void will be felt most. Whether it is the instructions to the back four, the occasional banter with journalists or fans who have put a word out of place, or the famous family entourage who have added colour, humour and character to the club, Liverpool will not be the same without him.
"We all dream of a team of Carraghers" is the chant the Kop will sing for just four more months.
Once he has worn the red shirt for the last time, they will be even more appreciative of what they once had. When they name Liverpool's greatest players, Carragher will not be hidden in the background. He will be where he rightly belongs, at the front of the podium.