Sun. Aug 9th, 2020

Jordan Henderson Opens Up on Turning Around Tough Start to Liverpool Career

2 min read
Jordan Henderson
Jordan Henderson overcame a tough start to his Liverpool career to captain the club to their first league title in 30 years | Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has insisted that leaving Anfield never crossed his mind despite a tough start to his career on Merseyside.

Henderson joined the Reds in a £20m deal from Sunderland in the summer of 2011 but struggled to adjust under Kenny Dalglish at his new club – with many believing the move had come too soon for the then 20-year-old.

Jordan Henderson, Fabrice MuambaJordan Henderson, Fabrice Muamba
Henderson’s £20m fee certainly raised a few eyebrows | Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

His poor start to life at Anfield prompted reports linking him with a move to Fulham, but a switch never materialised and the midfielder said he was determined to “prove people wrong”.

“There have been ups and downs over the last few years and throughout my career. There are always going to be tough times in your career and your life,” Henderson told the Liverpool Echo.

“Obviously, it wasn’t always easy at the start of my Liverpool career and although a lot’s been made of it, it was never really an option for me to leave. I knew that wasn’t what I wanted, and it gave me even more motivation to prove people wrong.”

The arrival of Brendan Rodgers at the end of the 2011/12 campaign signalled a change in fortunes for Henderson, as he proved his worth in Liverpool’s scintillating 2013/14 title-challenging side playing as a functional, hard-working number eight.

Jordan Henderson, Jurgen KloppJordan Henderson, Jurgen Klopp
The England international was a major beneficiary of Jurgen Klopp’s appointment in 2015 after signs of progression under Brendan Rodgers | Pool/Getty Images

It’s a role he’s gone on to master under Jurgen Klopp, with the England international reaching dizzy heights under his German boss.

“Jurgen has a good relationship with all the players. But he has a great balance in terms of the respect he has for them, knowing when to put an arm around them and knowing when they need a kick up the backside. You can see the players respond to him,” Henderson said of Klopp.

“The manager deserves a huge amount of credit for what he has done since coming to Liverpool, not only the team but the whole club top to bottom and also the fans as well. He has brought everybody closer together and what he has created is so special.”

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