With the home farewells of Sir Alex Ferguson and Paul Scholes ending in an elaborate title celebration at Old Trafford last weekend, the spotlight can now shift to another retiring Premier League servant: Jamie Carragher makes his last appearance for Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday.
Carragher has always wanted to go out on a high. He started the season on the Liverpool bench but has powered his way back into Brendan Rodgers’ starting XI in recent months, and in Steven Gerrard’s absence due to a shoulder injury, Carra will lead his team out at Anfield when they welcome the visit of QPR in their last league game on a season.
So Carragher will get his wish. But while he leaves a legacy behind, he also leaves a gaping hole in the defence that Martin Skrtel and others have failed to plug. And so Rodgers, understandably, has a lot of work to do to reshape a creaky defence strengthened this season by the return of the veteran.
But it’s not just the defence that needs improvement. Throughout the season, a young and at times exciting Liverpool team has shown its weaknesses, and it is no surprise that as the summer transfer window looms, the rumor mill has intensified.
Now let’s look ahead to the changes that Rodgers might make to his squad during the summer.
Here is how Liverpool might line up in the 2013-2014 Premier League season—a first-choice XI after Luis Suarez completes his 10-match ban, and in a 4-2-3-1 formation despite the recent experimentation with 3-5-2.