SUNDERLAND midfielder David Meyler believes Jordan Henderson can be a future England captain.
And he says fans at both club and country level should get off the Wearsider’s back.
Henderson has had a tough time since his move to Merseyside, with Liverpool fans unimpressed by the £20million midfielder’s displays in his first season.
And last weekend that disapproval transmitted itself to the Wembley terraces with Henderson’s arrival as 83rd-minute substitute for skipper Steven Gerrard being greeted by a smattering of boos.
That reaction amazed former Black Cat team-mate David Meyler who has tipped Henderson for the very top.
“He is good enough, there’s no question about that,” he said in an interview with radio station talkSPORT.
“I played with him at Sunderland and I’m surprised that England supporters would even boo him.
“It would never happen in Ireland.
“Maybe Irish people and English people are different, but that’s unheard of because whether you like him or not he’s going to be an English midfielder in three or four years time and eventually he’s going to captain England.”
Meyler and Henderson both penned five-year deals at Sunderland on the same day in April, 2010, but neither’s career has gone entirely smoothly, with Meyler having to deal with a double cruciate ligament injury to the same knee while Henderson has received strong criticism for his performances since moving to Anfield last summer.
“He’s had a tough start because everyone expects world-class things of him, but he moved to Liverpool on his own and took a month or two to settle in,” argued Meyler. “His family knows, and his friends know, that he is well able to play for Liverpool, without a shadow of a doubt.
“It’s like when Lucas played for Liverpool three seasons ago people booed him and gave him a hard time but a year and a half later he became a fans’ favourite. Jordan needs more time and when he proves himself the Liverpool fans won’t even remember his first season.”