Jordan Henderson has been confirmed as Liverpool’s new captain, and Brendan Rodgers has explained the reasoning behind this decision.
There will be an unusual feeling at Anfield when the new season begins, as they wake up to an era which doesn’t include Steven Gerrard. The Reds legend has a 28-year association with his boyhood club having initially joined their youth system in 1987, and he went on to represent the first team over 700 times and was captain since 2003.
But the 35-year-old’s influence on the field waned over the past couple of years, and with his contract expiring this summer, he took the decision to quit the club and join LA Galaxy in the MLS. Henderson took the armband when Gerrard was out of the team last season, and he has now been given the responsibility on a permanent basis.
“Jordan Henderson is someone who leads through example through his actions, attitude and application,” Rodgers told the official club website. “He shows total commitment and is a role model professional. He is also greatly respectful of the great traditions associated with being Liverpool captain and the responsibilities that come with it.
“He has been blessed to learn first-hand from one of the greatest the club has ever had in Steven Gerrard. Jordan has grown as a person and as a player since arriving at Liverpool [in the summer of 2011] and is ready to take up this challenge. He will be his own person, with his own style of leadership and his own ideas and methods.”
Henderson will be starting his fifth season at Liverpool this term, during which time he has become a key member of the first team and has made over 180 appearances. There was initial scepticism when the Reds paid up to £20million to lure him from Sunderland, but this now seems like value for a player who is relishing his new role.
“I’m absolutely delighted,” he told the official club website. “It is a great honour and a huge privilege to be named as the captain of this football club. I’ll carry on from what I was doing last season and I’ll also try to take on more responsibility. We all have the same goal – and that’s to bring success to this club and our incredible supporters.”