Saturday, 1 October 2011

Jordan Henderson - Is he all that?

By Lee Jaundrell   1/10/11
When I first read Liverpool were likely to be signing Jordan Henderson for around £16million, I wouldn’t say I was unimpressed rather I was kind of indifferent. He was a player I had heard of, I player I knew I had seen play when watching Sunderland matches, but I couldn’t really say what kind of player he was. He never stood out in the games I saw. The thing I hear most about Henderson is that he goes missing, and I can’t disagree with that view.
I tried to take more notice of him during the Under 21 tournament in the summer, but found myself drifting away from actually watching him, and yes he went missing. He is still young, turned 21 in the summer, and has two full Premier League seasons in the bag. Also, Kenny Dalglish and Damien Comolli both know more about football than I do, so I have to give young Jordan a chance.
Having now seen him play several times in the red shirt of Liverpool, I can say the lad has ability. He has a good touch, plays with his head up, and has plenty of energy. He scored a quality goal against Bolton, with his wrong foot, and although he missed a couple of chances when through on goal against Stoke, he had the pace, energy and awareness to make the run and get himself in the position to score. Yet the majority of Liverpool fans would have Dirk Kuyt in the team instead.
At 21 does Henderson just need time in the team, another season playing 30 odd games at this level, helping him develop into the player Dalglish obviously believes he can become. There are plenty of examples of players taking time to settle in top teams, some taking half a season, such has Evra and Vidic, or even a full season such as Pires at Arsenal. Looking closer to home a good example of a player taking time to settle is Liverpool’s very own Lucas Leiva, who was a target for the boo boys for a number of seasons, before finally looking very adept last year, and winning the supporter’s player of the season award.
Lucas came out in defence of Henderson recently saying,"I don't blame the young players because I have been in their position for a few years," the Brazilian said. "He is English and has already adapted to the Premier League.
"But to change your club and move to a big place like Liverpool is difficult. I think he is playing well. He will get confidence when he gets more minutes and understands the role he needs to do more.
"We just have to keep encouraging him and give him the confidence to keep improving."
Also, would Henderson get more time to adapt, from the fans, if he had been born in Bootle, and come through the Liverpool ranks. The likes of Jay Spearing and Martin Kelly have not been criticised in their fledgling careers to the extent that Henderson has been in just a few games.
In conclusion, Henderson obviously has plenty of qualities, yes he goes missing, but he is still young and learning the game. He will get the best coaching possible at Liverpool, and us fans must put our trust in Kenny Dalglish and get behind the lad, who could just possibly become a Liverpool great, or at least a very good dependable player for years to come, just like Lucas Lieva. A good place to start would be at Goodison Park today.

Friday, 30 September 2011

The 10 Best Premier League Players Right Now

By Lee Jaundrell   30/9/11

An unbiased view (well I tried to be unbiased)
No.10 - Yohan Cabaye - Newcastle
When everyone predicted a tough start, the former captain of the French Champions settled everything down and help move the geordies into the top 4. I’d have him in my team ahead of Nolan or Barton any day.
No. 9 - Edin Dzeko - Man City
Did you see the 4 goals against Spurs?
No. 8 - Nani - Man Utd
A bit of a pansy but sure knows how to light up a game with skill, flair and finishing ability
No. 7 - Ramires - Chelsea
A slow start to his Chelsea career last season, but looks every inch a Brazilian international now. Hard working box to box midfielder who is scoring his fair share of goals too.
No. 6 - Sergio Aguero - Man City
Scoring goals for fun in the new look attacking Man City team, and looking worth every penny of the £38million they paid for him. An off game against Bayern keeps him out of the top 5
No. 5 - Ashley Young - Man Utd
Young has fitted straight into Man Utd. He looked a good player at Villa, but looks a great player at Utd, linking brilliantly with Rooney.
No. 4 - Vincent Komany - Man City
Unsung hero (though not to me) of Man City’s great start to the season, a rock in their defence. The guy is achieving everything Football Manager 05 predicted for him.
No. 3 - Luis Suarez - Liverpool
Every Liverpool fan I know would have him at number 1, and they wouldn’t swap him for any other player in the world with the exception of Messi. The guy is just mental. An example of Suarez’s character can be epitomised by one moment in the game against Bolton, leading 3-0 the game done and dusted, Jaaskelainen picked up what looked to be a back pass. Suarez claimed profusely to the referee, the linesman, to everyone he could, like it was the final minute of a World Cup final poised at 0-0, and the Liverpool fans loved him for it.
No. 2 - Wayne Rooney - Man Utd
Held off from the number 1 spot due to currently being injured, though a return is imminent. Rooney is in the form of his life, scoring goals for fun, and dominating every opposition he is coming up against. This isn’t a vintage Man Utd team around him, which makes his achievements so far this season even more remarkable. 
No. 1 - David Silva - Man City
Just watch him, just watch him play football. The movement, the passing, the vision. He is delight to watch and I would presume a delight to play with. How good is the Spain midfield if this gem of a player isn’t guaranteed a place in their starting line up?
He is scoring goals, he is creating goals, and he is a constant menace. The way he floats across the field, always looking for space between the opposition’s defence and midfield is astounding, head up searching for that little pass, or a sway of the hips to open up a shooting chance for himself. Class
And the worst... Carlos Tevez - Man City
No matter how good a player you are when you’re on the pitch, you’re no better than me (I’m not even good enough to be described as a pub player) when you’re sat on the bench refusing to play.