Rodgers hails Carragher as defender nears 700 games for Liverpool

Having spent his entire career at Anfield, the former England international is poised to reach the landmark against FC Gomel in the Europa League on Thursday

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has heaped praise onto Jamie Carragher as he looks set to make his 700th appearance for the club.

Having celebrated his 34th birthday in January, the defender still played 31 times for his club last season despite having fallen behind Martin Skrtel and Daniel Agger in the pecking order.

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And the Liverpool boss has spoken of his huge admiration for the “phenomenal” Merseyside icon ahead of the expected landmark during the club's Europa League tie against FC Gomel on Thursday.

"He's a phenomenal character. I've watched him from the outside for many years and to play 700 games at a club as prestigious as this is incredible.” Rodgers told the club’s official website.

"The pressures that come with wearing the shirt at this club are vast and for him it's a way of life. He's devoted his life to being a football player. He's 34 now, so it doesn't get any easier when you are older, but certainly I've been very impressed over the course of the pre-season.

"I saw him when he came off during the Tottenham game after an hour and he still looked very fresh and that's a great testament not only to the work he is putting in every day but also to how he leads his life away from the field with his preparation.

"He's a model professional and if we can develop kids here like Jamie Carragher and go on to have a career like him then certainly the club won't go too far wrong.

"He's a phenomenal player, an incredible character and one that I'm happy to have by my side."