Jordan Henderson interview didn’t cause any ‘bad blood’ with Liverpool, says Jurgen Klopp

Jurgen Klopp insists there’s no “bad blood” between Liverpool and Jordan Henderson after the former captain claimed he didn’t feel wanted by the club.

During a wide-ranging exclusive interview with The Athletic, the England international midfielder said he accepted the opportunity to join Saudi Pro League side Al Ettifaq because “at no point did anyone ask him to stay”.

Klopp confirmed that he had told Henderson during talks over his future that his game time was likely to be limited this season given the influx of new midfielders.

“I read the interview and Hendo said the truth in all departments,” said Klopp.

“We had our talks. I told Hendo I wanted him to stay but we had these conversations as well about the possibility of not playing regularly with new players coming in. I cannot have a talk with a player before a season starts and say ‘you’ll play 50 games this season 100 per cent’.

“It all depends on performance. If Hendo had performed he would have had maybe 50 games, absolutely possible.

“But in that specific situation, with the relationship we have, I thought it was important that we spoke about everything, including ‘what happens if (you don’t get picked regularly)?’”



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Klopp believed Henderson, who had been at the club for 12 years, would have found it difficult adjusting to not being a regular starter.

“Hendo is a fantastic player, I’ll love him forever, super guy, but he’s not great when he’s not playing,” he added.

“James Milner was like this, Lucas Leiva too. Great guys but in the moment when they see the line up and they’re not in it they turn, Jekyll and Hyde, it’s unbelievable.

“I had to talk about that. He was my captain for nearly eight years. I didn’t want to wake up one morning and us to lock horns with each other just because he thought he would start. In Hendo’s ear and mind that came out as ‘okay, he doesn’t want me here’. I understand it 100 per cent but we clarified that.

“He said if I had told him ‘Hendo, stay here, you’ll be the main man in midfield’, he would have stayed. That’s the truth, but I couldn’t say that as much as I wanted him to stay. So that’s why it was better for Hendo to move on.

“There’s not a bit of bad blood. He was captain of the most successful team this club saw in the Premier League era. He was and is a sensational player. From my point of view, he gets a real farewell. There’s nothing to misunderstand.”

Read The Athletic’s exclusive interview with Henderson below



Jordan Henderson: I strongly believe that me playing in Saudi Arabia is a positive thing

(Photo: BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)

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