Jamie Carragher has claimed that Jordan Henderson is getting unnecessary criticism from Liverpool fans this season.
Henderson has been one of many Liverpool players to have been woefully below-par this campaign. But speaking on Sky Sports’ The Overlap, Carragher insisted that the captain is simply being overplayed.
“I think the issues are, they have been unfortunate with injuries in certain positions, I think there’s been mismanagement of the squad. I go back to Jordan Henderson. Jordan Henderson has taken a lot of stick from Liverpool supporters at the moment. Jordan Henderson has done his job. He came at twenty-one, he’s thirty-one, he won everything,” said the Reds legend.
“He shouldn’t be playing every week right now anyway and that’s because of the mismanagement of the squad. He’s not in the team right now at the moment, but he shouldn’t be playing week-in-week-out where he is now at thirty-two, thirty-three. He’s having to play there because of the mismanagement of the squad.
“Liverpool have got either really old players or really young players. They haven’t got anyone in that sweet spot of twenty-five to twenty-nine and you have to put that at Jurgen Klopp or Pep Lijnders, or the recruitment team who’ve had more praise than any recruitment team I’ve ever seen in my life. But you’d have to look at that squad at where it’s been left and where it is right now.”
It’s certainly a fair point from Carra, but it doesn’t excuse or negate the fact that Henderson has been poor this season.
Henderson failing to step up in difficult times
Every Liverpool fan would surely agree with Carragher’s assessment here. Had Klopp gone out and bought one or two new midfielders in the summer, Henderson wouldn’t be playing quite so much football.
Despite that, the 32-year-old has always been a favourite of the Reds manager. For much of his Anfield career, that has been fair enough. Henderson has been a consistent part of Liverpool’s best teams of the Klopp era.
As a result, it’s fair to assume that the £20m signing from Sunderland would still see plenty of football regardless.
To a point, there’s not necessarily anything wrong with that. As long as Henderson is deserving of a place in the squad, no Liverpool fan will take issue with such a storied figure being involved.
The problem starts when the performances dip off. Liverpool fans are entitled to expect more from their captain than what he’s currently delivering.
He may be getting on a little, but he’s thirty-two, not forty-two. Some of the criticism has surely been over the top. Not all of it, though. When the chips are down you need your big characters to step up. Henderson hasn’t done that this season. Whatever the reasons are for that, it hasn’t been good enough.
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