Jürgen Klopp heaped praise upon Jordan Henderson after what he described as an ‘outstandingly good’ performance against Newcastle United on Saturday – but stressed the captain can still enhance his game even further.
The midfielder produced an all-action display to help the Reds to a crucial 2-0 victory over the Magpies at Anfield, contributing to the outcome in both an offensive and defensive capacity.
Henderson has received plenty of plaudits for his efforts, but it came as no surprise to Klopp – and the manager is predicting there’s still more to come from his skipper.
He told his pre-Porto press conference at Anfield: “He knows what I think about him and what Gareth Southgate is thinking about him; that’s absolutely 100 per cent clear.
“Can Jordan improve? Yes, of course – he is young enough to do so in a lot of parts of the game, but is he a very strong player? Yes, 100 per cent. That’s why he is playing for us, that’s why he’s our skipper.
“The last game for sure was an outstandingly good game from him, it was really - in a lot of parts - a really good performance. He controlled the game, switched the sides, his passing range was brilliant, he did things in the right moment, was very aggressive, very, very good in defending and even when he was not aggressive, he was patient and won the challenges. That helped us a lot.
“He is a really good player and if anyone saw that then I am happy for him. There was not a second of doubt in my opinion, but as I said, he can improve for sure.
“He has the most difficult job in England - he had to replace Steven Gerrard. That’s not a nice job to do, not a nice job to have. Hopefully people don’t think about that too much anymore and see him more as a single person and as a fantastic football player.
“I always thought he dealt really well with it. When he is fit, he is a really, really strong football player.”