Henderson has 'sided with the oppressor' and 'rubbished his legacy' at Liverpool

By Sports Desk July 27, 2023

Jordan Henderson has "sided with the oppressor" and tarnished his Liverpool legacy by joining Steven Gerrard in Saudi Arabia.

That is according to Paul Amann, the founder of Kop Outs, a Liverpool-backed fan group that was formed in 2016 to provide a voice for LGBT+ supporters.

Henderson ended his 12-year association with Liverpool this week as he joined Al Ettifaq, now coached by Reds great Gerrard, in the Saudi Pro League.

Reports have claimed Henderson is set to earn as much as £700,000 per week in the Gulf state. The Saudi regime has been denounced by many organisations and governments for violating human rights within the country.

Homosexuality is illegal, and LGBT+ rights are not recognised by the Saudi government.

Henderson was a huge proponent of the Premier League's rainbow laces campaign, and has been the face of campaigns promoting LGBT+ awareness.

But Amann has been left unimpressed by the 33-year-old.

"As a player he brought us everything," Amann told Stats Perform.

"Every trophy we could have hoped for and ever imagined. He captained us to all that.

"For him to be leaving, effectively slinking out of the back door, to go off to Saudi and chase money, after he'd professed to being such an ally, is really, really disappointing and has left lots of Kop Outs members – and even the wider Liverpool fanbase – wondering: Who was the real Jordan Henderson?

"Twelve years at Liverpool and he appeared to embody the values of the city and the club. He would speak out against the abuse of women, speak out for the ability of women to play the game and take part in wider society.

"He'd speak out for things like the food bank programme, the NHS, and for us most importantly, LGBT+ rights. Yet he's going to a country where much of that would not be allowed."

For Amann, there is no doubt Henderson has severely dented his legacy at Anfield.

"As a player, his legacy is going to live long. No doubt about that. He's won everything," he said.

"As a person, he’s rubbished his own legacy, tarnished his own image by choosing to side with the people who oppress rather than continue the battle against such oppression. He could have gone anywhere in the world if he'd wanted to.

"He had the opportunity to take up positions in this country I'm sure – he could have carried on playing at Liverpool, he would have been given an absolute hero's send-off, which he's denied himself, and he could have been celebrated and lauded until the end of time for Liverpool fans as one of the greatest captains of all time – at Liverpool or indeed anywhere.

"Instead, he's decided to side with the oppressor, slink off through the back door of Anfield, make sure there wasn’t any proper goodbye, and he's gone off to a regime that’s against all the values of Liverpool."

Asked if he had one message for Henderson, Amann said: "Don't ever presume to show allyship unless you genuinely mean it, and what you've done, is proven that your allyship is just pretence."

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