Jordan Henderson’s place in the Liverpool starting XI shows how badly Jurgen Klopp has mismanaged his squad.
That’s the view of Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher. Speaking to CBS Sports Golazo after the Reds 5-2 humiliation against Real Madrid last night, Carragher admitted that Henderson should no longer be asked to play every week.
But having failed to bolster the midfield accordingly, he thinks Klopp is left with no choice but to play the 32-year-old.
“My point is that they are trying to play Jurgen Klopp football without players who can play Jurgen Klopp football,” said the pundit. “That is some players who have been brought in but also some players who are there now, who have just come to the end. I would never criticise those players, because they have done their job for Liverpool over the last four or five years.
“The one people mostly talk about is Jordan Henderson, he’s the captain. We all know there is reinforcements needed in midfield and that lad gets a little bit of criticism from Liverpool fans, he shouldn’t. He’s done his job.
“He came in at 21, he’s now 31 or 32 and he’s won everything. He’s lifted every trophy. The fact that he is still having to play week in, week out, means there has been mismanagement off the pitch in terms of players being brought in.”
Henderson looking for help
As he often is, Carragher is right on the money here. Last night at Anfield, Henderson looked every bit a player who simply can’t run these kinds of races anymore.
Some will point to the fact that Luka Modric – five years his senior – is still doing the business at an elite level. And to an extent, that’s true. But despite what pundits may have you believe in the aftermath, Modric looked his age for much of the game last night, too.
Besides, the Croatian doesn’t have eight years of Klopp’s high-intensity football sitting heavy in his legs. Henderson does. This season more than ever it’s really showing. Modric also has fresh legs around him in Eduardo Camavinga and Federico Valverde. How Liverpool could do with a player like either right now.
As Carragher alludes to, it’s utter madness that this hasn’t been addressed in the transfer market. If players like Hendo weren’t in need of some help already, then last season’s marathon campaign has well and truly finished them off.
That isn’t to say that Henderson’s Liverpool career should be over. The veteran is still a useful option at times and given more time to rest, this would be highlighted even more. As a captain and a leader he is peerless and will continue to be so until he eventually hangs up his boots.
On the pitch where it really matters though, Liverpool have needed to move on for quite some time. Henderson and his like have been terrific for the club over an extended period, but Klopp’s – or FSG’s – reluctance in the transfer market is turning them into
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