Kenny Dalglish has praised Jordan Henderson, but doesn’t believe anyone can replace Steven Gerrard…
Former Liverpool star Kenny Dalglish has praised the impact that Jordan Henderson has had on the Liverpool side in recent weeks, but has slammed comparisons between the 24-year-old and Steven Gerrard.
Dalglish, who was speaking in his Daily Mirror column on Friday evening, said: “I don’t think anyone can dispute that Jordan Henderson is now one of the mainstays of a Liverpool side that is moving forward.
“His development has highlighted the importance decisions can play in a player’s career. Sometimes, decisions are made that are going to have a huge influence on your career – sometimes for better, other times for worse.
“Jordan’s career, at this particular moment in time, is jogging along fantastically well. So you can say that any decision that has been made up to this point, more often than not, has been right.”
Dalglish signed Henderson during his second stint as Liverpool manager, spotting the potential in the then teenage midfielder while he was at Sunderland.
He added: “I signed him in 2011 and I don’t know for certain what options he had to leave Liverpool, but it is good news for the club and for Jordan that he stayed.
“He has had a few bumps and bruises along the way – they will stand him in good stead – and needed a bit of reassurance at times.”
But despite Henderson’s excellent progress so far this season, including his impressive performances as captain during Gerrard’s recent, enforced spell on the sidelines, Dalglish believes he can’t directly replace the skipper.
“It is unfair to use the word ‘replace’ when you talk about Jordan, Steven Gerrard and the Liverpool captaincy,” he reasoned.
“He doesn’t replace Steven. Nobody will – you can forget ANYBODY coming in as a one-off replacement. He just takes over as captain when Steven leaves in the summer. Taking on the mantle doesn’t seem to faze Jordan.
“It’s like a sport all its own in this country – you pigeonhole somebody coming through and put a tag on them. But he is his own man and if you’re your own person, you have got a better chance of succeeding.”