After retiring in 2013 at the age of 35, Jamie Carragher has gone on to become a well-respected pundit, commentator and analyst for Sky Sports. Whilst also working as a columnist for The Telegraph. 

Being a good pundit is no mean feat, however, and it certainly isn’t every retiring player’s forte.

That’s why Carragher and Sky colleague Gary Neville are so well respected – they’re articulate, insightful pundits, who make the game seem so simple for the people watching at home. 

We spoke to Jamie to find out more about his life as a pundit, the hardest part of the job and who he looked up to before taking on the role.

But was it hard for him to retire in the first place?

“No, it wasn’t difficult to stop (playing).” The 41-year-old admitted.

“I knew I was going to retire at that time 18 months before. I enjoyed punditry more than coaching, so I knew before I finished that was what I wanted to do.

“I’d probably say Alan Hansen and Andy Gray (were the pundits I took inspiration from), they were the big two when I was playing.”

Carragher went on to join Sky Sports for the 2013/14 season as a pundit, linking up with former teammate Jamie Redknapp and fellow Liverpool legend Graeme Souness. He also features on Monday Night Football with Gary Neville, which he says is his favourite role at Sky.

“I prefer (compared to co-commentary or in-game analysis roles) in-depth analysis of a team or a goal on Monday Night Football.

“I do love co-commentary now though as you feel part of the game.”

During his time on the highly popular Monday evening programme, Carragher has worked on-screen with the likes of David Ginola, Yaya Toure, Wayne Rooney and John Terry to great effect.

It was the instalment with Patrice Evra which earned the most plaudits however, as the two discussed the Luis Suarez racism incident, with Carragher apologising for wearing t-shirts in support of the Uruguayan. 

“There’s no doubt that we made a massive mistake, that was obvious,” Carragher admitted on the show in October.

“Maybe I can look at myself now and say ‘you didn’t have the courage to say I’m not wearing it’. Apologies, we got it massively wrong.” 

Carragher went on to tell us that this was the most difficult part of punditry he’s experienced so far.

“I think probably talking about racism (is the toughest), as you’re talking about a serious subject that you have not experienced personally.”

Is it difficult to criticise an ex-teammate, however?

“Not really,” The Champions League winner told us.

“I play for Sky now – not Liverpool – so I have to perform for them!”

We look forward to seeing a lot more of Carra’ on our screens for years to come, a great role model for all aspiring pundits, but also the perfect example of a down-to-earth, normal bloke, who happened to be very good at football.

(Image – vagueonthehow from Flickr)