(Video) ‘A big reason…’ – Jordan Henderson explains his decision to leave Liverpool for Al Ettifaq

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Jordan Henderson has spoken publicly about his reasons for joining Al Ettifaq from Liverpool this summer.

The former Reds captain ended his 12-year association with the club last month as he made the controversial decision to team up with Steven Gerrard’s side in Saudi Arabia, with the 33-year-old being criticised for moving to a country with oppressive laws regarding LGBTQI+ rights.

He had previously been a vocal supporter of that community (The Athletic), and his move to the Middle Eastern nation was met with condemnation in some quarters.

Henderson has now explained that his eagerness to help grow the Saudi Pro League, and to once again work with his predecessor as Liverpool captain, prompted him to make the much-discussed career move.

Speaking to Beanyman Sports, he said: “It’s exciting times, the project and something different is definitely a reason why I wanted to come here. Over the next few years, I’m sure it’ll grow and I want to be part of that to try and help it grow.

“I love football so I want to try and go all over the world. I know the people in Saudi [Arabia] love football. Hopefully, we can keep continuing to grow the league over the next few years and hopefully I can be a big part of that.

“Stevie [Gerrard] was a big reason why I came, to work with him and play under him.”

We can understand the lure of working under his former teammate and one of the most influential players in Liverpool history, but it’s a huge shame that Henderson has – for many Reds fans – tainted his Anfield legacy by moving to a country with such a horrific stance on LGBTQI+ rights.

Alas, it’s his career, and it’s his prerogative to decide what he wants to do with it, whatever the consequences might be.

You can view Henderson’s comments in full below, via Beanyman Sports on YouTube:

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