As expected, Jordan Henderson has signed a new contract at Liverpool and has stressed his belief they can challenge for the title in the near future.
The England international joined the Reds in 2011 for £19million, and despite a slow start to life on Merseyside, he has now established himself as a key member of their midfield. Indeed, with Steven Gerrard leaving for LA Galaxy in the summer, the former Sunderland youngster is set to be given the captaincy having deputised for the 34-year-old many times this season.
With Raheem Sterling stalling over a new contract it had been feared that Henderson may also delay committing his future, but he has vanished these concerns by signing a new deal which is believed to be for five-years and worth £100,000-per-week. And with this now resolved, the 24-year-old has offered his opinion that Brendan Rodgers’ side will soon be challenging for honours.
“It’s brilliant news for me to commit my future to this football club – I really feel that it’s a good time for us to look forward to the future, with the squad we’ve got, the manager, the size of the club and the fans we’ve got,” he said. “I really think, over the next few years, we can challenge and start winning trophies. I think the next phase for us is to start challenging for titles.”
Henderson becomes the third high-profile player to commit to the Reds in recent months, with both Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge doing likewise earlier this season. And whilst Sterling may believe his future lies elsewhere, Sky Sports sources believe youngster Jordan Ibe and defender Martin Skrtel will soon put pen-to-paper on new deals to extend their stays at the club.
It has been a difficult season for Liverpool, who narrowly lost out to Manchester City in the race for the title last term. This time round they look likely to miss out on the top-four and a place in the UEFA Champions League, whilst Aston Villa beat them in the FA Cup semi-final last weekend. Despite these failings, Rodgers insists he remains the right man to lead the club.
“I don’t think there is anyone better,” he said. “Three months ago I was a tactical genius, performing to a good level. We lost some important games and now I’m not so good. That’s football, people will speculate. If you lose a couple of games, others will be linked with the job. That will happen whether I’m doing good, bad or indifferent because this is such a big club.”
Can Jordan Henderson become a great for Liverpool, and will his signing a new contract maybe persuade Raheem Sterling to do likewise in the coming weeks?