Henderson not banking on Europa League final start


Jordan Henderson is ready to go for Liverpool's Europa League final clash with Sevilla but the club captain does not expect to make Jurgen Klopp's starting XI in Basle.

Henderson sustained lateral collateral knee ligament damage during the first leg of the Premier League side's quarter-final triumph over Borussia Dortmund, a setback that appeared to signal the end of his campaign.

But the 25-year-old returned as a substitute in Sunday's 1-1 Premier League draw against West Brom and was named in Roy Hodgson's provisional 26-man England squad for Euro 2016 the following day.

"The injury is good," Henderson, who has also suffered with a chronic ankle problem over recent seasons, told a pre-match news conference.

"I've progressed really well, trained and managed to play 25 to 30 minutes. I feel good, and will play as long as the boss wants me to."

Henderson explained his team-mates will be kept guessing over whether they have made the cut for Klopp's line-up, with the German tactician a fan of keeping his cards close to his chest until a few hours before kick-off.

"We don't know yet," he said. "We'll probably find out a few hours before the game as always - no hints.

"I don't expect to start. I've been out a long time. I've only played 30 minutes and the team has done very well to reach the final.

"But at the same time I feel good. I hope I've been okay in training, and I'm ready to play as long or as little as the manager wants."

Klopp was appointed at Liverpool after the club parted company with Brendan Rodgers earlier in the season, following a return of 12 points from eight Premier League matches and a pair of uninspiring Europa League draws against Bordeaux and Sion.

Henderson concedes the turnaround under Klopp has been impressive.

"We've made massive progress," he added. "From the start of the season when the manager has come in he has put belief and mentality not only into the players, but the fans and the whole club.

"Over the last six or seven months, we've gone up a level as a team, every single player has gone up a level and now we're in a European final on the big stage.

"Hopefully we can perform like we have been over the last few months, and if we can do that I'm very confident we can win the game."