The last time Jordan Henderson ran out in a League Cup final for Liverpool, the weight of expectation didn’t fall quite so heavily on the shoulders of the 25-year old with long-serving skipper Steven Gerrard there to bear the brunt. Now, as successor to local legend’s well worn armband, the Reds captain will look to make it two for two when he leads the Merseyside giants out against Manchester City at Wembley later on today.
“I think it adds pressure but when you take on [the role of] captain of such a big club like Liverpool it’s pressure anyway, but as players you want that,” he told the club’s official website in the build-up to the big day. “You want that pressure to drive you on, to motivate you to want to do better for not only the team but the club and the fans,” explained the skipper. “My main focus is on just the final now and concentrating on what I need to do for the team to be successful.”
Consistently inconsistent has been the phrase quite often used to describe Liverpool’s season thus far, but cup finals — as the story goes — are one off matches where the form book — if you’ll allow another cliche — is thrown out the window. The Anfield outfit may have trounced the Citizens once already this season, but Henderson isn’t about to take the result for granted or start picturing himself joining the pantheon of legendary Liverpool captains that have lifted silverware in the famous Red.
“That’s not really in my thoughts,” said Henderson when asked about getting the chance to lift the trophy. “All I’m thinking about is doing the best for the team where I feel as though I need to do as captain to lead by example. For me, it doesn’t matter who lifts the trophy or who judges me about being captain. All I’m bothered about is winning,” continued the 25-year old, striking the perfect tone. “If we win then that’s the most important thing and anybody can judge or say what they like because at the end of the day we [would] have won and that’s the main thing.”