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“I’m not going to lie” — Jordan Henderson on leaving Liverpool



"I'm not going to lie" -- Jordan Henderson on leaving Liverpool

Liverpool‘s former captain, Jordan Henderson, has opened up about his departure from the club in the summer of 2023, with his candid admission receiving support from teammate Virgil van Dijk.

After a remarkable 12-year tenure at Anfield, Henderson made the decision to leave Liverpool and join Saudi Arabian side Al Ettifaq, where he reunited with former teammate and now manager, Steven Gerrard.

However, Henderson’s stint in Saudi Arabia was short-lived, as he returned to Europe less than six months later, signing with Dutch side Ajax in January.

Reflecting on his departure from Liverpool, Jordan Henderson expressed his belief that leaving was the best decision for both the club and the team’s progress, despite the personal pain it caused him.

He praised the club’s performances following his exit and wished for a “fairytale end” for manager Jurgen Klopp.

“Looking back, I think it was the right time for me as a player [to leave] but also for them as a team and for them as a club, as much as that hurt at the time.

“I was very emotional. Looking back in that period of time, looking back now, it is easy to see that it was the right decision made by the manager and the club.

“It was the best decision to freshen things up. If you look at Virgil [van Dijk] becoming captain, Trent [Alexander-Arnold] becoming vice-captain, and how they’ve stepped up again this season, I think it has given them another lift.”

Acknowledging the emotional aspect of his departure, Jordan Henderson stressed that, in hindsight, it was the right decision for all parties involved, particularly highlighting the elevation of Virgil van Dijk to captaincy and Trent Alexander-Arnold to vice-captaincy as evidence of the team’s rejuvenation.

In a recent statement, current Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk expressed his regret at seeing Henderson depart but emphasized the inevitability of changes in football.

Van Dijk, speaking to The Mirror, praised Henderson’s contributions to the club and acknowledged the necessity of other players stepping up in his absence.

He highlighted the departure of Henderson and vice-captain James Milner as pivotal moments necessitating shifts within the squad, emphasizing the need for players to adapt to new roles.