Jordan Henderson insists he is ready to play an active role for England at Euro 2020, hitting back at scathing criticism from ITV pundit Roy Keane who questioned the Liverpool captain's place in the squad after a lengthy injury layoff.
Groin surgery ruled Henderson out of the last three months of the 2020/21 Premier League season with Liverpool and his 45 minutes for England in the final warm-up game against Romania was the midfielder’s first game time since late February.
It led former Manchester United captain Keane to question why Henderson is in the squad at all, declaring on ITV’s overage of the Romania game, “He's clearly not fit…I don't think he should be involved.”
Henderson himself insists he is ready to play as much as manager Gareth Southgate wants him to.
“Listen, as a player you want to play and I’m not coming here just to be around the camp, like Roy was saying,” the Liverpool skipper is quoted as saying by The Times.
“I want to come here and contribute in the games. How much of that is not really down to me, it’s up to the manager to make a decision. Whenever I’m called upon, I’ll be ready and hopefully I can be a big contribution to this tournament and our success.”
Henderson has no personal issue with Keane, the manager who gave him a first-team debut at boyhood club Sunderland way back in 2008, and puts it down to everyone wanting to have an opinion on the matter.
“I know more detail and so does the manager, which Roy may not. Everybody’s going to think they know better than everybody else,” he said.
“All my focus has been on the last couple of months is working as hard as I possibly can to be in a position where I can contribute in the tournament and I’m very thankful I’m in that position now.”