Is the time up for Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher?
Gerrard and Carragher have been arguably two of Liverpool Football Club’s greatest ever players, certainly two of its greatest servants. But both are now in the autumn years of their career.
Gerrard is the younger of the two at thirty-two, and would seem to have plenty of juice in the tank as of yet. He is still an important part of the England team, and was the only Englishman named in UEFA’s official ‘team of the tournament’ for Euro 2012. It seems far too early to discard Gerrard given his unquestioned talent, and it seems quite likely that he could prolong his career even further by being deployed in a deeper role, as has been so successful for Paul Scholes at Manchester United.
Carragher is a different kettle of fish. He is nearing the age of 35, and it has been noted by many observers that his pace is not what it once was. Unfortunately, the Premier League can be an unforgiving place for ageing defenders, as Laurent Blanc found out to his cost during his brief period at United.
As Carragher has almost always plied his trade at centre-back – certainly in recent years – he can’t even claim to be a utility player capable of filling numerous positions in an injury crisis or for the purpose of resting first choice players. Should Agger or Skrtel be unavailable for some reason, it would seem far wiser to give Coates the opportunity to aid his development, than conservatively throw a substandard old favourite in the team.
Carra has been a fine player, but he should call it a day at the end of this season.