Liverpool are set to confirm the news that midfielder Jordan Henderson is the club’s new permanent captain following the departure of Steven Gerrard.
This is according to various sources, including the Liverpool Echo, whose football reporter James Pearce claims the announcement will be made on Friday.
It will be the culmination of a stunning transformation for Henderson, the England international who was previously a much-maligned figure at Anfield following his £20 million move from boyhood club Sunderland in the summer of 2011.
Henderson has come on in leaps and bounds under the management of Brendan Rodgers, who has shown the 25-year-old even more faith by handing him the captain’s armband.
The energetic midfielder had made no secret of his desire to replace Gerrard - and Rodgers has granted him his wish.
Henderson wanted captain's armband
“I’ve always wanted to take more responsibility, especially at the stage of my career I’m at," Henderson was quoted as saying by Goal.com last month. “I feel I’m getting a bit older now, a bit more mature and of course I want to take more responsibility for the team but at the same time, I think it’s up to all of us as a team to take more responsibility on the pitch and make sure we put in good performances.
“When I’ve been vice-captain I’ve just tried to do my best for the team as I always have and to learn as much as I can from Stevie, like I have from when I first came to the club.
“I think I’ve learned a lot from Steven. I have from when I first came to the club, he’s been a huge role model and leader to all of us. All of us have learned a lot from him; just being with him every day, training with him every day, you learn a lot from him.”
Replacing Gerrard - an impossible job?
Henderson will be acutely aware, though, that replacing the huge void left by club legend Gerrard will not be easy.
Gerrard captained Liverpool with distinction for 12 years - winning multiple trophies, including the Champions League in 2005, along the way - after being handed the armband, aged 23, in 2003.
Born and raised in the city, that Gerrard was a true Liverpudlian endeared him even more to the club’s famously passionate supporters.
However, Henderson has shown his commitment to Liverpool Football Club with his impressive performances over the past couple of seasons and has the full support of the Anfield faithful as a result.
Having the likes of James Milner - an experienced pro - and Martin Skrtel, who is set to sign a new contract with the Reds, around him next season should help Henderson settle into his new role.
Overhaul at Anfield
And on the subject of settling in, Henderson will have the responsibility of helping a batch of new teammates find their feet at Anfield this summer.
The Reds have already signed Adam Bogdan, Nathaniel Clyne, Roberto Firmino, Danny Ings, Joe Gomez and Milner this summer, while Divock Origi also links up with the squad following his move from Lille.
Rodgers is in the process of overhauling his squad following a disappointing 2014-15 campaign, which saw Liverpool finish sixth in the Premier League table.
Liverpool fans: are you pleased Jordan Henderson is your new club captain? Should the armband have been handed to someone else? Have your say by leaving a comment in the box below!
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