Former Chelsea midfielder Joe Cole believes Jordan Henderson has jeopardized his England future by opting to leave Liverpool for Al Ettifaq in the summer transfer window.
The former Liverpool captain completed a move to the Middle East to reunite with Steven Gerrard as he brought the curtain down on his 12-year Anfield career in an unexpected fashion.
Henderson pointed at his desire to get regular game time under his belt as a reason behind his move to Saudi Arabia and also spoke about his desire to carry on playing for England ahead of Euro 2024.
The 33-year-old has been called up by Gareth Southgate for England’s friendlies against Ukraine and Scotland in the ongoing international break and even featured against the former last week.
However, Cole believes Henderson wouldn’t be as sharp as he once was due to the quality of the Saudi Pro League, adding that he has put the England manager in a ‘difficult situation’.
He said via Daily Mail:
“From a footballing perspective, I can understand why it puts Gareth in a difficult position. When you’re competing with the players Henderson is competing with – Rice, Bellingham, Ward-Prowse, Phillips – they are all playing in the Champions League [and Europa League].
“Is he going to be as sharp as he was? You have to remember the margins that England went out with against France at the last World Cup. You have to be so sharp, every player on the pitch. Henderson will know he’s put his England future in jeopardy.”
Henderson started alongside Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice and played the full 90 minutes as England were held to a 1-1 draw by Ukraine. With a handful of other talented players vying for his spot, it remains to be seen if he retains his place in the team against Scotland later this week.