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J. Henderson

'I'm being protected by a 19-year-old!' - Henderson insists he is ignoring critics after Bellingham 'respect' comments

17:56 GMT+3 10/12/2022
Jordan Henderson Jude Bellingham England 2022
England's Jordan Henderson is unfazed about criticisms directed his way, but admitted it was nice to have the support of 19-year-old Jude Bellingham.
  • Henderson started and scored against Senegal
  • Bellingham called for more "respect"
  • Henderson joked about 19-year-old's defence

WHAT HAPPENED? Gareth Southgate raised a few eyebrows when he kept Henderson in the team for England's last-16 match against Senegal, where the Liverpool man scored the opener in a 3-0 win. After the match, Bellingham, who provided the assist for that goal, demanded "respect" be put on his team-mate's name. Henderson joked about the youngster having his back, but insisted he doesn't pay attention to external criticism.

WHAT THEY SAID: "[Laughs] I’m getting protected by a 19-year-old, I love it," Henderson told the BBC. "I’m not too bothered about what people think of me, there will be people who love us [me] for who I am and what I do and there will be people who hate us for the exact same reasons. The only opinions that matter to me are my teammates. When your teammate says something like that of course it makes you feel good."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Henderson's goal against Senegal was only his third in an England shirt, but he has provided more than just offensive quality to Southgate's prolific side. Bellingham wasn't the only teammate to come to the 32-year-old's defence, as Three Lions captain Harry Kane waxed lyrical about his leadership skills. It now seems that Henderson forms a vital part of Southgate's plans in Qatar, as they make the final preparations before a mouth-watering last-eight clash against the holders France on Saturday.

IN THREE PHOTOS:

DID YOU KNOW? Aged 32 years and 170 days, Henderson became England's second-oldest ever World Cup scorer against Senegal, after Tom Finney against USSR in 1958 (36y 64d).

WHAT NEXT FOR HENDERSON? The Liverpool man will hope to feature once more for Southgate's side, as England battle it out with France to try and reach their third successive major tournament semi-final.