Brendan Rodgers believes that Steven Gerrard's decision to retire from international football will help to ensure that the Liverpool captain can 'be at his optimum level' for the Reds in the new season.

The midfielder announced the news yesterday following a 14-year career with England, which included 114 caps, three World Cups, three European Championships and a spell as skipper.

Rodgers had spoken to his talisman before any decision was taken and, speaking at a press conference in Boston today, explained the subsequent benefits for his own side.

"I'd spent a lot of time talking to Steven on it, because I know how much it means to him to captain his country," the Northern Irishman told reporters gathered at Fenway Park.

"He has been a wonderful captain. But Liverpool is everything to him and there's certainly no doubt that by missing out on international football, it will make him fresher.

"He'll be ready to be at his optimum level as often as he possibly can. For us at Liverpool, it's great. It brings an end to what has been a great career for England."