Jordan Henderson: Prisoner of the Moment

Posted by

By Carl Norris

In Jamie Carragher’s autobiography he states, and I’m paraphrasing, that the difference between Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard is that Gerrard was born a world class player, while Lampard made himself into one. As I painstakingly watched Lampard have a great game in this years’ Champions League Final I thought about Carragher’s assumption, and I came to the conclusion the only two words that matter here are world class.

I watched Lampard closely as he robotically passed out of pressure, kept the ball for his side, played the simple pass, and kept his tactical awareness. That night I watched another European Final, a one Liverpool fans know all too well, 2005 in Istanbul. Watching Gerrard in that game his presence is immense. He was everywhere he needed to be on the pitch that night, including at right back. But the moral of the story is whether you were born with an innate ability to be the difference for your team while lifting those around you and making them better, or you had to tirelessly work at it, the most important thing you do is win.

Enter Jordan Henderson; a player who came into LFC with massive expectations, and a hefty price tag as well. Since Henderson came to LFC he’s heard naysayers, like a lot of players who don’t produce 9s and 10s on a game in game out basis at the club. But this was different I felt it was a bit harsh. After all he’s barely 21 years old; he was playing out of position early in the year (even right back at Blackburn), and he was adjusting to a new city with different standards then his home club Sunderland. These are not excuses, just facts. He never made excuses either; he just gave 100 percent every game he was penciled in the first eleven. Even Dirk Kuyt an LFC legend can be seen saying Jordan Henderson works the hardest in training in an LFCTV Online Video.

The irony here is that all year I’ve heard Liverpool fans either give Henderson a 10 or a 1, there have barely been any fair in-between, average grades. And to be honest, he’s been a 7 all year long. Sure he seems to only be capable at times of playing square and back passes, but don’t forget about a certain Lucas Leiva either. A man who was vilified at times by the LFC faithful, myself included. Lucas has turned himself into somewhat of a cult hero at LFC and for good reason, as his loss was felt all season.

I see the same future for Henderson, as he has no quit in him. He took his goal well in the last home game vs. CFC, and you could see what it meant to the young lad. So I ask other LFC supporters to not live in the moment with Henderson. There have been too many highs and lows in his critique all season. It’s a process, as long as he continues to give everything to the team as he did all year long in terms of effort and graft he will be all right. What Steven Gerrard has you’re born with; you either have it or you don’t, but you would be lieing to yourself if you said you didn’t want to see Jordan Henderson turn himself into a world class player like Lampard.



  1. This is a good article. The reason behind huge expectations of Henderson is that he’s entering a team where the club’s greatest midfielder is leaving. People want the next best thing and will panic if they don’t.
    Although I’m of mixed opinion as to weather he will become as good as lampard or a top midfielder or even evolve as a player like Lucas.
    Just one thing to point out as well he played right back because of doni’s sending off and I don’t think anyone could have helped that. Dalglish got his tactical changes spot on after the sending off but just wasn’t executed as well

  2. For all we know Henderson might flourish under Rodgers! I for one was bitterly disappointed with the lad last season but on many occasions I believe he played out of position. Giving him, like all the others, the benefit of the doubt is something we cannot deny anyone.

  3. He’s a technically gifted player and I think he’ll flourish under Rogers. I just hope that when he does play, it’s in the center as a attacking mid… However it’s already crowded in there so my choices would be between Gerrard, Hendo, Gylfi (hopefully if he comes) and poss even Aquaman – not to mention an improving Shelvey. With these boys fighting for places it would be pretty good!

  4. Moving indeed, well spoken. He has potential, and like Carroll, he was given a heft price tag to live up to.

  5. Aye, I Agree with Carl, no reason to be so hard on Hendo. Sometimes too much money at a young age bring unreasonable expectations and that appears to be the case here. Tough to convince an LFC supporter to be patient after such a poor finish this past season for the club but it’s the truth. If he develops as I believe that he will, his contract my be looked at as a fair rate a couple years from now.

  6. We really forget to realize how young these players are. 20 years old making that much money under that much spotlight takes a lot of time to get use to. Even the greats have faultered under pressure before. Henderson must take advantage of the opportunity he is given and until then we have no right to judge. YNWA!!!!!

  7. M8 gr8 article. I for 1 like hendo. Played out of position best part of the season. When in psition has played well. The blackburn game he was played at rb. He was man of the match. Think he will b a gr8 player for us. He will flourish. My fear is that if this does happen other teams will come in for him. I don’t want liverpool to become a feeder club and by young talent and sell on. I think the future is bright. Bare in mind the lad is 20/21 year of age. He will come good next year along side gerrard an lucas

  8. Great first article Carl, some might say you have the same inate ability in writing that Gerrard had on the pitch. Henderson will come into his own. All the doubters need to put themselves in their own 21 year old mind and think how thy would handle the situation. He’s learning from the best and his awareness and abilities will continue to grow.

  9. Just like Lucas Leiva, he is suck at beginning. but now he is irreplacable. Maybe Henderson need to learn Lucas how to quickly adept a new position.
    I sense premier league cup near future. YNWA

Comments are closed