There was some surprise when the Liverpool player called up for England midway through the international break was Raheem Sterling and not Jordan Henderson, especially given the positions in which Roy Hogdson scrambled to add some emergency depth with one World Cup qualifier left on England's slate. Henderson, always the consummate professional, managed to remain optimistic rather than slighted by the oversight.
“I think everyone wants to play for England,” Henderson said. “It’s a massive opportunity and to play for your country is a real honour. But all I can do is keep playing well for Liverpool and keep working hard.
“There’s nothing more I can do. When it comes to selection it’s up to the England manager to select the best squad he can.”
It's not dissimilar to the point his teammate Daniel Sturridge made earlier this week in attempting to clarify his stance on club vs country, but not having been selected for the national team puts Henderson under a much dimmer spotlight regarding his England ambitions. Still, Henderson is hoping that with Brendan Rodgers' continued tutelage he can find a vein of form of the kind that will eventually impress The Hodge.
“The manager has put a lot of faith in me and that gives me confidence,” said the midfielder. He’s improved my game since he came to Liverpool which I am very thankful for. We spoke about a few areas where I needed to improve. It was more tactical awareness than anything. I went away, did what he said and I’ll carry on doing that.
“Hopefully I can keep repaying him. I’ll keep working on my game on the training pitch and learning off the other players and staff here. I want to keep improving all the time. Hopefully I can do that, stay fit and keep performing.”
Henderson hasn't made any appearances for England's senior team since Euro 2012, but his increasing versatility for Liverpool could make him a valuable asset for ol' Roy to consider in Brazil next summer. Until then, Henderson will continue to give it his best wherever Brendan Rodgers needs him.
“It doesn’t matter to me what position I’m playing. I’ll give 110% wherever I am put and do it to the best of my ability."