How Jordan Henderson became Liverpools leader culminating in Champions League glory – ESPN

How Jordan Henderson became Liverpool\s leader culminating in Champions League glory - ESPN
Liverpool news: Hes immaculate – Steven Gerrard labels Jordan Henderson the ultimate professional
Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has labelled Jordan Henderson the ultimate professional after the Reds midfielder captained his side to Champions League victory.

The former Sunderland midfielder captained the Reds to European glory in Madrid as they beat Tottenham 2-0 in the final, whilst also pulling off the biggest semi-final comeback ever in the competition in overturning a 3-0 deficit against Barcelona.

When Jordan Henderson lifted the Champions League trophy above his head, my first feeling was one of pride. Proud that Liverpool were back at the top of European football and especially proud of Jordan, because I know how hard he works. I know the sacrifices he has made, the pressure and scrutiny that he has been under.

And former Liverpool captain Gerrard thinks the current skipper deserves his success for the way he conducts himself.

When Jordan [Henderson] lifted the trophy above his head, my first feeling was one of pride, Gerrard told The Times.

If I had to name someone I regard as the ultimate professional, then Jordan would come right at the top of the list. He is immaculate in the way he lives his life.

Proud that Liverpool were back at the top of European football and especially proud of Jordan because I know how hard he works. I know the sacrifices he has made, the pressure and scrutiny he has been under.

Steven Gerrard says the midfielder is the ultimate role model after watching him follow in his own footsteps by captaining the club to European glory

If I had to name someone I regarded as the ultimate professional, Jordan would be right at the top of the list. He is immaculate in the way he lives his life. Some people dont see the stuff behind the scenes, the gym work, the way he eats, but he is someone who is an incredible role model.

He is selfless. He is someone who puts himself at the back of the queue because he looks after everyone else first. He puts Jordan Henderson last.

Gerrard also made sure to make mention of Hendersons quality as a player as well, insisting that the midfielder is a much better footballer than he is often given credit for.

All of that is important but, of course, he is a top player as well. He has running power, you can trust him with the ball, a good range of passing and, over the last few months, has risen to the challenge of pushing Liverpool forward and come right into top form. That is the key. You dont last at Liverpool just by being a top guy,” Gerrard said.

Jordan has had his fair share [of criticism], but he handles it well and the best thing to do is let your football do the talking. That is what he has done. That is what he will continue to do.

The Rangers manager admitted that he hoped his old sides first trophy under manager Jurgen Klopp would spur them on to win more silverware over the next few seasons.

I am hoping this will become the catalyst for him to lift more trophies above his head. I know that is what he wants, the manager wants, and the supporters want. I am sure Jurgen will have the team fired up to go again from the moment they are back in pre-season training.

Jordan Henderson was delighted to put a smile on his fathers face after opening up about their emotional embrace following Liverpools Champions League triumph.

One of the lasting images of the Reds 2-0 win over Tottenham in Madrid was the sight of Henderson hugging his dad, Brian, and breaking down in tears amid the celebrations.

The Liverpool captains father was diagnosed with throat cancer six years ago and initially hid the diagnosis from Henderson for fear it would derail his football career.

“My dad has been through a lot over the past few years, not only with himself but with his family,” Henderson said. 

“I am sure he will be so proud to see us win the game and win the Champions League. It will mean the world to him. I am just glad I can put a smile on his face.

“Its obviously emotional. We have come a long way as a team and we have had so many knockbacks and to finally get over the line… it is an amazing feeling and one that we will remember forever. Its so special.”

It was an almost cathartic moment for Henderson, who has often faced criticism over his role at Liverpool.

And, after several near misses under boss Jurgen Klopp, the importance of winning European footballs biggest prize is not lost on the England international.

Liverpool secured a sixth European crown thanks to an early Mohamed Salah penalty and a late strike from substitute Divock Origi.

“It was nice to know we have come back from so many disappointments and finally get over the line and win a big trophy,” Henderson added. 

“It is an amazing night and hopefully we can use this to win more in the future, it gives us the confidence to know we can win the Champions League and together we can move forward and hopefully win more trophies as well.”


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