Following a gruelling two-week pre-season training camp in Austria, Liverpool are just hours away from their first competitive game of the 2020/21 campaign and expectations among this Premier League-winning group of players couldn’t be higher.
One player who carries the weight as the standard-bearer of this magnificent team is club-captain Jordan Henderson.
Henderson, 30, is still undergoing his rehabilitation following a knee injury sustained last season but the Liverpool skipper is expected to be fit in time for the club’s opening league match of the season against Leeds United on September 12.
The ECHO recently confirmed that Henderson will begin full training after the Community Shield clash against Arsenal at the weekend after the Liverpool skipper underwent his own individual training sessions in Austria.
Henderson has spoken to Liverpool’s official website ahead of the club’s highly anticipated title defence and it was great to hear the standards Henderson expects to be upheld by his teammates once the campaign begins on Saturday.
The England international admitted he is yet to look back on the club’s 19th league title triumph with his focus solely on ensuring further success isn’t too far down the road.
“I don’t think I ever will [reflect on Liverpool’s recent achievements], to be honest. Maybe when I finish and I look back,” Henderson told the club’s official website.
“For me, there’s no real point to do it now because I still don’t feel I’ve finished, I feel there’s still a lot more to come. We can be a lot better. I know people will say, ‘Well, how?’ but trust us, in certain games we’ve played, in training sessions, we can still improve. Individuals can still get even better again.”
The message from Henderson was the perfect battle cry ahead of what is expected to be the most physically gruelling season yet following the ramifications of the pandemic.
Henderson is more than just our captain, he is the embodiment of what it means to play for such a historic club and he plays every game as if it were his last.
His drive and focus typify the standards that Jurgen Klopp expects from his players following such unrivalled success in recent years.
On the pitch, Henderson has demonstrated his value after picking up the Football Writers Association Player of the Season following his sustained brilliance during Liverpool’s title procession.
Even after entering into the twilight stages of his career, there is a belief that Henderson can still be a mainstay in Klopp’s starting XI for the next three-four seasons and this will only increase the likelihood of further success for Liverpool.
Henderson and Fabinho are arguably the only guaranteed starters in Klopp’s midfield while the club weigh up the possibility of adding further reinforcements such as Bayern Munich’s Thiago Alcantara.
One thing remains certain this campaign, when you have a captain in your team such as Jordan Henderson, the idea of players resting on their laurels will just not be tolerated as Liverpool set their sights on retaining their league crown next season.
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