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02nd Jun 2019

Alex Ferguson gave a very strange reason for not signing Jordan Henderson in his autobiography

Kyle Picknell

Well now you can say he lifted the Champions League trophy from his knees, not his hips like the modern footballer

They did it. Liverpool won their sixth Champions League trophy on Saturday night, beating Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid.

As a result, Jordan Henderson became just the fourth Liverpool captain to lift the biggest prize in club football, and the first English captain to get their hands on the trophy since Frank Lampard in 2012.

Whilst he has often faced unfair criticism throughout his career, it is clear that Henderson is now absolutely invaluable to this Liverpool team, both for his ability as a player and his leadership on the pitch and in the dressing room.

Interestingly enough, however, Sir Alex Ferguson, famously quite a judge of talent as you will no doubt be aware, picked up on a perceived flaw that stopped him from attempting to sign the player for Manchester United all the way back when.

In his second official autobiography, 2013’s Alex Ferguson: My Autobiography, the Scottish manager revealed the one significant problem he saw with the young midfielder that stopped him from pursuing Henderson.

He wrote: “We looked at Jordan Henderson a lot and Steve Bruce was unfailingly enthusiastic about him.

“Against that we noticed that Henderson runs from his knees, with a straight back, while the modern footballer runs from his hips. We thought his gait might cause him problems later in his career.”

It seems quite a strange observation to make but it is true – Henderson does have a very particular way of running. Evidently it doesn’t seem to have actually held him back at all, as he remains one of the most athletic and tireless central midfielders in the game at the moment.

Now he’s a European champion as well, I’m sure he will see the funny side in Ferguson’s comments. After all, you could probably say “He lifted that Champions League trophy from his knees, not his hips like the modern footballer.”

Oh, and if you’ve ever wondered what Ferguson’s take on Stewart Downing and Andy Carroll was, just read the rest of that page. You won’t be disappointed.

Although we have managed to cut it off just as one the greatest managers in the history of football was starting to wax lyrical about, er, Jay Spearing.

It’s a funny old game, isn’t it?