Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has penned an extension to his deal with the Merseyside club.
The 33-year-old began his professional career at Anfield in 1998, and is now believed to have agreed to stay with the club for a further two years.
Having confirmed his new contract on Monday, the Liverpool and England captain expressed delight at being able to prolong his career with his boyhood club.
“I think everyone knows what it means to me,” he told the club’s official website. “I’ve been here that long and so to extend, it’s a big day for me and I’m really happy for myself and my family. It’s great news.
“It lets me know the club thinks an awful lot of me and want me here. I’m glad it’s all done and it’s happened at the right time before the season, so I can just focus on playing as well as I can.”
Gerrard made his first-team debut in November 1998, coming on as a substitute in a Premier League meeting with Blackburn Rovers.
He has since gone on to make 629 appearances for Liverpool since, winning two FA Cups, three League Cups, a UEFA Cup and one UEFA Champions League during that time.
Gerrard has also earned 102 caps for England, scoring 19 goals and captaining them at the 2010 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2012.
Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre stressed the importance of keeping the midfielder at the club to help the squad’s youngsters after the departure of legendary defender Jamier Carragher, who retired at the end of last season.
He added: “Brendan (Rodgers) made it very clear, very early. He recognised with the loss of Jamie just how important players like Steven are – players who really know what the club is all about. Players who are leaders and show leadership on and off the pitch.
“We’ve brought in a lot of younger players over the last year or so, but it’s important to have that experience and particularly a captain and leader like Steven.
“Brendan was at the forefront of asking us to get this sorted and, as always with Steven, it was a pretty easy job because we knew he wanted to be here, we wanted him to be here, so we put it to bed pretty quickly.”