Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted his regret at missing out on signing Jordan Henderson amid concerns over his ‘running style’ prevented Manchester United from making a bid.
Henderson caught the eye of a number of clubs after bursting onto the scene at Sunderland in 2008, with Man Utd one of the sides potentially interested in making a move for the player.
However, no such move ever materialised and Henderson ended up signing for United’s rivals Liverpool in 2011, with the midfielder battling through an early shaky start to go on and captain the club.
The England international had initially struggled and was even reportedly offered to Fulham in 2012 as part of a potential swap deal with Clint Dempsey, yet the player stayed at Anfield and has gone on to lift both the Premier League and Champions League under current boss Jurgen Klopp.
Sir Alex Ferguson wrote about his decision not to make a move for Henderson in 2013 autobiography, citing fears of the United medical team regarding the midfielder’s running style, though the legendary manager has now admitted his regret at missing out on a player he had identified at a young age.
“We were ready to make a bid for Jordan Henderson at Sunderland. I spoke to Steve Bruce and he loved the guy,” Ferguson said on ‘A Team Talk With Legends’ panel, as per Sky Sports.
“And then our medical department said they were not happy with his running style – he could be the type to have injuries.
“I must say it was one of my bits of management to make sure the player is always available. If you sign a player and he is not available for you, it is a waste of time so that is the point I have to make about Jordan.
“We loved him as a player and he has proved that now, he has been fantastic and all the stories I am being told, it tells me I missed out on a really good person.”
The 30-year-old is currently preparing to take on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United side this weekend, with Ferguson stating that it is arguably the biggest game of the season, between the two biggest sides in England.
“They are the two most successful teams in Britain when you add up all the trophies,” he said.
“United against Liverpool, it is the game of the season – the most successful sides in the country.
“Thank goodness I’ve retired, because when I see Liverpool’s performances over the last two seasons – they have been phenomenal.”