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Rodgers: Carragher a model professional

Brendan Rodgers has led the tributes to "model professional" Jamie Carragher, and believes he can still write one more significant chapter in his Liverpool career.

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Carragher announced on Thursday that he will be retiring at the end of the season, calling time on an Anfield first-team career spanning 16 years.

Despite the defender's plans to hang up his boots, Rodgers feels Carragher still has plenty to offer between now and the end of the season.

"Jamie has been absolutely outstanding for me since I joined the club. He has been a model professional on and off the pitch and has shown an unswerving commitment to our work," Rodgers told Liverpool's official website.

"We still have a lot to play for as we look to finish as high up the Barclays Premier League as possible and continue our progression in the Europa League, a competition we'd like to win. He will have a significant role to play for us between now and May and I know his commitment and dedication on the pitch will remain as it has done his entire career at Liverpool.

"Jamie's focus is always on doing what is best for the team and he has said he doesn't want any distractions while there are still important matches to be played and won. But when the time is right we, as a team and a club, will give the man the tribute and recognition he deserves; I know the supporters will want to say thank you to someone who has served them with such distinction for so long."

A host of football personalities have taken to Twitter to hail the contribution of Carragher, who won 38 England caps in addition to making more than 700 appearances for his club.

Michael Owen, a former Liverpool and England team-mate of Carragher, said: "What a servant Carra has been for Liverpool. A rare breed. It's been a privilege to play alongside, room with and be big mates with one of football's real men. I doubt we have heard the last of him. He has too much to offer the game to be away for long!"

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand, who also played alongside Carragher at international level, said: "Jamie Carragher has been a great servant to Liverpool. Great player and a top fella! Funny guy! Nutter when we were kids but management material now."

Former England striker Gary Lineker said: "Jamie Carragher will hang up his boots at the end of the season. Those boots were worn by a player respected by everyone in the game."

Michael Gray, the former Sunderland, Blackburn and England player, said: "One club, one top professional. Well done Jamie Carragher on a great career!"

West Brom's former Republic of Ireland defender Steven Reid said: "Respect to Carragher. Great career and servant to Liverpool FC."

Carragher's Liverpool team-mate Lucas Leiva said: "Just read the Carra statement. Let's enjoy a few more months with him before he retires. It is amazing what he has done for LFC."


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