Would you pay £20million for this man? Well Liverpool Football Club, beginning an ‘English revival’ all by themselves with the signing of Andy Carroll earlier this season, have just agreed a fee thought to be just under half that which was paid for Carroll for Sunderland winger Jordan Henderson. Now personally I feel that Kenny Dalglish ought to be applauded for such a bold strategy in a division which long since gave up on attracting English talent, but can Liverpool afford it? Signing English footballers, no matter how talented they are, is such a novelty nowadays, that the prices charged by clubs such as Sunderland and even Watford a few years ago for Ashley Young reflect this fact.
Henderson is almost entirely unproven, not an England regular, and a big gamble at £20million (or £15 million plus David Ngog), but he could just pay off big-time. No matter what supporters say, there is something very special about young English talent playing at the top level of English football (see Jack Wilshere for details). Kudos to Liverpool for trying to make this a slightly more regular occurrence, and I sincerely hope that in five years’ time the usual prediction of Liverpool ‘having a good year’ is a little more than just hot air, as it has been in recent seasons.