Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has reassured Jamie Carragher he still has a future at Anfield beyond this season.
Carragher has seen first-team chances in the Premier League limited this season, with the veteran defender being used more in the Europa League.
The Reds stalwart will captain a largely inexperienced side in their Europa League clash with Young Boys as Rodgers rests most of his stars for Sunday's Premier League showdown with Manchester United.
Rodgers has indicated that it will be up to 34-year-old Carragher, who is in the final year of his contract, to decide whether he wants to continue playing or join the coaching staff next season.
"I had a conversation with Jamie when I first came in and he wasn't sure about where he was at in his career," said Rodgers.
"He has been a stalwart at this club and was a regular until last season. But I've been so impressed by him on and off the pitch.
"I think he can play on. He is one of the guys who is the soul of this club and there has to be a place for someone like him. Whether he wants to play on is up to him.
"He is one of the best technical players we have here - left foot, right, his touch and his reading of the game.
"OK, the legs might not be what they where six or seven years ago, but he's still got a lot to contribute. No doubt there is a role for him later on but there is no reason why he cannot play on from what I've seen over the last few months."
Rodgers admits leaving Carragher out his starting XI for Premier League games is the most arduous job he has at Anfield.
"He is the hardest part of my job," added Rodgers. "Every day of his life he comes in and gives his all. Guys like that you want to put in the team when it matters. This game matters, but all players want to play in the Premier League and not picking him is the most difficult part of my job as Liverpool manager.
"Seeing him work so hard and not giving him a shirt is the most difficult job I've got."