Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers believes Steven Gerrard may decide to bring an end to his international career after leading England at next year’s World Cup.
Gerrard, capped 107 times by his country since making his debut in 2000, will be 34 by the time the tournament in Brazil comes around.
And Rodgers thinks by the end of next summer Gerrard will need to think about sacrificing his international aspirations in order to prolong his club career.
“I think it’s something he will assess and look at,” Rodgers told a number of national newspapers.
“If you go to a World Cup in Brazil at 34 years of age you might not have many more championships left in you. Very few players do. I can think of Javier Zanetti and Paolo Maldini who have played on late but it’s rare.
“But, for Steven, he 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 time to rest.
“It will be Steven’s decision. But I’m sure in these years now he’ll want to maximise every cap, every performance and every minute on the pitch he can, and that’s what he’s trying to do.”
Rodgers also urged England manager Roy Hodgson to use his captain sparingly in this month’s friendlies with Chile and Germany.
“Steven is a real talisman for the group. He is a real leader for the team and everyone there,” he said.
“Whether he plays in the two friendlies or not is another matter. There are absolutely times when you can rest him and I think that is important for him.
“He and Roy have a good relationship and I’m sure if he needs a breather in these two games he will get it.”