LIVERPOOL look set to break new ground when Brendan Rodgers makes his competitive bow as manager next week.
But for one Anfield stalwart, the feeling will be a very familiar one.
If selected, Jamie Carragher will be making his 700th Liverpool appearance when the Reds step out in the Europa League on August 2, probably in Belarus.
It’s a milestone only one other Liverpool player has experienced in 120 years of Anfield history.
And that man, Ian ‘857 game’ Callaghan, is only now beginning to feel that his remarkable record is safe.
At least until another long-playing legend comes along.
“Jamie would have to play 50 games a season for another three seasons to get there, which is a lot to ask,” he said, “but at the end of the day records are there to be broken.
“And I have said all along that if anyone was going to break it I’d like it to be Jamie because he’s a lovely guy, a fantastic footballer and has a great attitude.
“But even if he doesn’t get there, to reach 700 games is a fantastic milestone, especially in this age of squad rotation.
“When I was playing it was the age of Shanks telling us ‘Same team as last season’, so it’s fantastic for Jamie to get to 700.”
Despite entering his 17th season for the Reds, Carragher insists he is still learning, and that Rodgers can add to his game even in the twilight of his sparkling career.
“Brendan is very much a coach, and it’s great to see him out there. Even at my age you never stop learning,” he explained.
“There is always a certain degree of disappointment when a new manager comes in because it means it hasn’t worked out for the previous one, whether it was Roy, Gerard, Rafa or Kenny.
“But I’ve learned a lot from him already because although he is relatively young he has been a coach for 20 years. I’ve learned from the way he talks to players about what he expects, even those who are not in my position.
“If I’m picked, I’ll know exactly what he was expecting from the other players so I’m learning all the time. It’s not just what he’s saying to me, but everyone.
“When a new manager comes in it’s fresh and new. There is more enthusiasm because people are trying to impress a bit more and it’s a clean slate.
“I’ve learned a lot from the manager over the past few weeks and I’m sure I’ll learn a lot more over the next 12 months. Ronnie Moran once said to me at 65 you never stop learning so I have still a lot to learn at 34.”
The man Rodgers replaced, Kenny Dalglish, managed a ‘mere’ 515 games in a Liverpool shirt, and while the Anfield legend acknowledges that Callaghan’s record is probably safe, the countdown to Carragher’s retirement shouldn’t start just yet.
“Carra might have just missed out on that but he has been a part of an awful lot of people’s reign at the club and has served every single one of them superbly well. I am sure he has one or two miles left in him yet,” he said.
“It is a great accolade for him to be the second in the table for most appearances as a Liverpool player. He has been here a while and hopefully he will be here for a lot longer. Cally is iconic here not just because of the number of games he played but for the service he gave to the club and the success he brought with him.”