Saturday 20 January 2018

Rodgers: Brazil Gerrard's swansong

Graham Chase

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers expects England captain Steven Gerrard to call time on his international career after next summer's World Cup in Brazil.

Gerrard will be 34 by the time the finals come around and the midfielder conceded last year he was even considering his long-term future before the European Championship in 2012. He recently revealed he was savouring every moment of his involvement with England as it could be his final year on the international scene.

Rodgers has no issue with Roy Hodgson using the veteran midfielder in both England friendlies, against Chile and Germany at Wembley.

Having missed only two Premier League matches last season and having started each league game in this campaign, Gerrard remains a regular for his club. But Rodgers does not anticipate Gerrard, who won the first of his 107 England caps in 2000, extending his international career beyond next year's tournament.

"Steven probably looks at it as though this is his last international year and after the World Cup that will be all finished and he will have lots of time to rest then," Rodgers said. "I'm sure if he needs that breather in these two games he will get that. If you go to a World Cup in Brazil at 34 you might not have many more championships left in you. Very few players do.

"It will be Steven's decision, but I'm sure now he'll want to maximise every cap, every performance and every minute on the pitch he can."

Gerrard's fellow midfielder Jordan Henderson (23), who has not played for England since Euro 2012, has also been included in Hodgson's squad and Rodgers believes his versatility means he has a good chance of staying there.

"If you're going to a World Cup, you're going to need players that can play in a number of positions well," said Rodgers, who will have Glen Johnson available to face Fulham tomorrow following an illness. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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