English Premiership

Henderson tells Liverpool to keep eyes on the prize

2016-11-05 14:26
Jordan Henderson (Getty Images)

Liverpool - Jordan Henderson wants Liverpool to be remembered for winning trophies rather than as the Premier League's great entertainers.

Prior to this weekend's round of matches, Liverpool were the league's joint top-scorers on 24 goals in 10 games together with leaders Manchester City.

But Liverpool captain Henderson said while the way Jurgen Klopp's side played might appeal to supporters, there was a clearly defined strategy behind the Merseysiders' approach.

"The main priority for us is if we're performing and playing the way we can then obviously it is entertaining football, it is high-intensity and everybody is going to enjoy watching us," said the midfielder ahead of Sunday's match at home to Watford.

"But we do it for a reason -- and the reason is because that's the best way to play football and the best way to win games for us as a team.

"If we keep doing what we've been doing, keep working on the training field and listening to what the manager wants, and then applying that on the weekend then it'll be very entertaining, but there's a purpose to it -- and for me, it's the best way for us to win."

For all the plaudits regarding their attacking play, Liverpool's defence has come under scrutiny this season given they've conceded 13 goals in the league.

"A lot of the pundits and press will big up that we're conceding too many goals," said Henderson.

"But in terms of the team, when you're actually in a game, I feel as though we're dominating games and teams aren't getting many chances.

"If we keep going in that direction and keep improving, then we'll improve in all areas -- not just conceding, but scoring goals as well."

Liverpool striker Danny Ings has been ruled out for the rest of the season after he underwent surgery on a knee injury this week.

But Klopp's options are boosted by the return of James Milner, who has recovered from a virus and is expected to feature at left-back, while midfielders Georginio Wijnaldum and Emre Can are available following illness.

Watford moved ahead of Manchester United in the table last week by beating Hull City 1-0 at Vicarage Road, although they required an own-goal from Tigers captain Michael Dawson to shade a less than stellar encounter.

Nevertheless, Walter Mazzarri's side have lost just once in their last seven top-flight fixtures to sit in seventh in the Premier League table ahead of Saturday's matches.

Liverpool are unlikely to take the Hornets lightly having lost 3-0 away to Watford last season, although the corresponding fixture, in May, ended 2-0 to the home side at Anfield.

"We physically beat them up on the day and the quality we showed in getting the goals was perfect, but it is going to be a different animal away from home," Watford captain Troy Deeney said of the 3-0 game.

"They believe they can challenge for the title. They are doing well at the minute. I enjoy watching them as a neutral but when I step on the pitch it is war.

"It will be a massive test and if we are still in seventh after that game then we will be doing alright."

Watford are hoping defender Sebastian Proedl can feature after limping off against Hull with a muscle injury at a time when Craig Cathcart (groin) is already sidelined.

Striker Isaac Success (foot) is also out but a late decision will be made on Stefano Okaka, who trained this week after overcoming a hamstring strain.

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05 December 2016
Middlesbrough v Hull City, Riverside Stadium 22:00
10 December 2016
Watford v Everton, Vicarage Road Stadium 14:30
Arsenal v Stoke City, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Hull City v Crystal Palace, Kingston Communications Stadium 17:00
Swansea City v Sunderland, Liberty Stadium 17:00
Burnley v AFC Bournemouth, Turf Moor 17:00
Leicester City v Manchester City, King Power Stadium 19:30
11 December 2016
Chelsea v West Bromwich Albion, Stamford Bridge 14:00
Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur, Old Trafford 16:15
Southampton v Middlesbrough, St. Mary's Stadium 16:15
Liverpool v West Ham United, Anfield 18:30
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