Jordan Henderson has recalled one of the darkest moments of his career – being offered the opportunity to leave Liverpool for Fulham in 2012.
The midfielder rebuffed the option given to him by then manager Brendan Rodgers to part ways with the club, keeping true to the belief that he could be a success with the Reds.
“We were preparing for a [Europa League qualifying] game against Hearts at Anfield. We met as normal in the [Hope Street] hotel and I got a knock on my door saying the manager wanted to speak to us,” Henderson told The Guardian. “To be fair to Brendan Rodgers, it was really just a conversation. It was an opportunity [to leave for Fulham] I didn’t want and I didn’t like. I still felt I had an awful lot to give.”
“Ever since that day I had something in me,” the skipper added. “I needed to prove to the manager I would get in his team eventually. I’d do absolutely everything to be in his team, this football club, and I’d prove them wrong.”
The No.14, evidently, has proven that he is a more than capable player for the side, becoming an integral leader and cog in this world-beating Liverpool team.
We can’t imagine what it would be like without Henderson leading us out every week, and it’s strange to think how close he was to moving on at one stage.
The 30-year-old is one who has received his fair share of stick over the years, but he’s more than proved himself worthy enough of the shirt, and, one might be inclined to argue, one of the club’s greatest servants.
We’re glad to see the Englishman appreciated finally as his own player, beyond harmful comparisons initially made between Hendo and former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard.
Some of us may not have celebrated that difference in the early years of the skipper’s Anfield career, but we couldn’t be more grateful for the kind of leader he’s grown to become and the success Jordan’s helped bring.