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Brendan Rodgers hails Jordan Henderson

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Brendan Rodgers believes Jordan Henderson is a "role model" in the Liverpool team.

Henderson signed for the Reds for £20 million from Sunderland in 2011, however, struggled in the early stages of his Anfield career.

In 2012, the Wearside native almost moved to Fulham, but, he decided to stay and fight for his place at Liverpool.

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That indeed proved a bold move from Henderson and a successful one. After working hard to improve, one year later he was handed the vice-captaincy of the club following Daniel Agger's departure to Brondby and was a vital player when Liverpool went within a whisker of winning the Premier League title.

Since Steven Gerrard's departure in May, Rodgers had promoted Henderson to captain the Merseyside club and he feels the England international has come on leaps and bounds in the past few months.

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“It has been a fresh start for the group,” the Northern Irishman told the Liverpool Echo. “Jordan is taking over from an iconic figure who had been captain here a long time.

“The idea of giving Jordan the vice-captaincy last year was to see if he could learn some of those traits off Steven who had captained the club incredibly well.

“I just thought Jordan would learn very well from that and on top of that add his own qualities to it.

“I think the players have really accepted it and responded well to it. I can see already how he’s grown in terms of his stature.

“That’s important because you can give some guys the captaincy and they fold with it. It can have a negative effect. But he’s a young man who can cope with that.

“He has enormous respect in the squad because of his quality - he’s a role model.

“I think he will prove to be an outstanding player going forward as well as a tremendous ambassador for the club."

Captaincy

Henderson is one of Liverpool's most senior players in a youthful side and he's relished the chance of stepping up in the past few years. With Gerrard playing not as much as he expected last season, Henderson seen himself captaining the side more frequently.

His performance in the centre of the park in his side's 2-1 victory against Manchester City at Anfield was one of his best in a Red shirt. He scored a superb 25 yard goal and outplayed Yaya Toure and Fernandinho from the first to the final whistle.

There is now a vacant role for the vice-captaincy of Liverpool with several candidates in the running. Martin Skrtel is the most senior player in the team in terms of games played for the club and he captained the Reds on a number of occasions last term. Lucas Leiva and James Milner are too in the mix and Rodgers admits Kolo Toure could also be handed the duty.

“I am fortunate that I have got so many guys who can lead,” the former Swansea City manager added. “I look at this guy (Kolo Toure) the other night and someone of his experience.

“He’s brilliant for the players. He’s a natural talker and inspirer of the team and that’s what we want.”

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Topics:
Jordan Henderson
Liverpool
Premier League
Brendan Rodgers
Football

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