Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard is set to announce he is to leave his boyhood club at the end of the season.
The midfielder, who will turn 35 in May, is out of contract in the summer, but, despite being offered a new deal, he appears to have decided the time is right to leave and pursue a fresh challenge.
Gerrard, who scored two penalties in Liverpool’s 2-2 draw against Leicester, has been free to talk to foreign clubs from January 1.
He has not yet decided on a future destination, but a move to Major League Soccer has long been rumoured and Los Angeles Galaxy are said to be interested, as are clubs in the Middle East.
If he were to announce his decision to leave in the next 24 hours, it would be a move which mirrored that of close friend Jamie Carragher, who decided to reveal he was retiring in February 2013 to avoid his on-going contract situation becoming a distraction for manager Brendan Rodgers.
Carragher wrote on Twitter on Thursday night: “Sad day for LFC & English football with the Gerrard news, I think it’s the right decision all things considered.”
Former Reds midfielder Terry McDermott added: “Mark my words Gerrard is the greatest player to have played for @lfc sad sad day for everyone connected with the club.
“Kenny (Dalglish) and Souey (Graeme Souness) shone in great great LFC teams...Gerrard has played in LFC teams that were at best mediocre and he carried them to trophies”.
Gerrard joined Liverpool as an eight-year-old and has made 695 appearances and scored 180 goals, winning 11 trophies with pinnacle being lifting the Champions League in 2005.
He made his first team debut in 1998 and was made captain in 2003.
Liverpool have not commented on speculation about Gerrard’s future, but it has been suggested the player himself will confirm the news on Friday.