BBC pundit Garth Crooks has, as always, written his ‘Team of the Week‘ column, and he has thrown up some interesting points yet again.
Crooks discussed all things from the title race down to Ralph Hasenhuttl’s impact at Southampton, but one statement on Jordan Henderson’s current situation at Liverpool hit home harder than any other points.
The Reds beat Chelsea 2-0, returning to the top of the table in doing so, with Henderson putting in a ‘Man of the Match’ performance to help his side earn all three points.
What did Crooks say?
Henderson has only recently been reinstated into the starting line-up on a more regular basis after a chat with Klopp over his position in the team, and he has put his money where his mouth is with some inspirational displays.
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After his showing against the Blues, in which he set up Sadio Mane’s opener, Crooks wrote: “If Liverpool do happen to win the title, the return to form of Jordan Henderson will have had a lot to do with it.
“How much credit Jurgen Klopp will take for that remains to be seen. It was Klopp who dropped Henderson – harshly in my view – but the reaction of the Liverpool captain has been quite remarkable.”
How much credit does Klopp deserve?
None. It was Henderson who walked into the German’s office, told Klopp that he felt he performs better as a No.8 – pointing to his recent displays with England as proof – and forced his boss’ hand.
Now Henderson has put in three excellent performances in the role against Southampton, Porto and Chelsea, meaning there is no way that Klopp can have even a shred of the acclaim for the England international’s upturn in form.
The former Borussia Dortmund manager even apologised for playing Henderson as a No.6 for the past couple of years, but revealed that he ‘had to’ as no other player could.
Fabinho has been at the club for nearly a year however, so if Klopp was waiting for a No.6 to arrive before restoring Henderson to his favoured role why has he delayed such a switch until the final month of the campaign?
Henderson deserves 100% of the credit for speaking up, and even more credit for delivering the performances to match his belief in his own ability.