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Michael Carrick to retire from football at the end of the season

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A coaching role at Manchester United beckons.

United for Unicef Gala Dinner - Red Carpet Arrivals Photo by Anthony Devlin/Getty Images

Not a huge surprise, this, but we think it’s the first time it’s been made officially official. Michael Carrick, Manchester United’s club captain, will retire from football at the end of the season. Speaking ahead of the second leg of United’s Champions League knockout tie against Sevilla, he told the world that he was, basically, knackered.

And fair enough. He made his West Ham debut in August 1999, and has been with United since 2006. He’s made more than 700 professional appearances over the course of that long career, and won, among other things, five Premier League titles.

While Carrick has always had his critics, he has been admired by every United coach he’s worked with, from Alex Ferguson all the way through to Mourinho. As such, he’s likely to take on a coaching role from next season — discussions are ongoing but “it’s been kind of sorted out”.

The big question, then, is who will be United’s next club captain? Once Carrick leaERIC BAILLYves, Antonio Valencia will become the de facto seERIC BAILLYnior professional. Paul Pogba might respond well to the exERIC BAILLYtra responsibility, while Chris Smalling has done the job a few tiERIC BAILLYmes this season. Alternatively, DaERIC BAILLYvid de Gea is the best and most important plaERIC BAILLYyer in the team, so that would seen to make sense. Your ERIC BAILLY thoughts?