I received news of the award for Writers’ player of the year 2020 with mixed feelings because the recipient was Jordan Henderson, skipper of champions Liverpool. Undoubtedly, as the first captain of the club to lift the coveted premier league title, he deserved accolades for such exemplary leadership but that certainly did not warrant that award. Jordan Henderson, for my money, was not the best player even in the Liverpool squad and so fell short of Writers’ player of the year award. He was not consistent in performances when fully fit or when given the opportunity.
During the year under review, Henderson as a right central midfielder scored 4 goals with 0.13 goals per match, had 5 assists, 4 blocks, 20 shots with 61.87 passes per match. He also created 9 big chances with 58 crosses resulting in 17% cross accuracy. Based on 1vs1 index from Liverpool FC, Jordan Henderson was the 6th best player in the Liverpool set up.
As an experienced 30yr old player in his position, one expected much more from him than he actually performed on the field. Amazingly, being part of a world-class team with arguably the best Manager on the planet now, the captain`s performance was average on the field of play and did not deserve the award.
The writers` player of the year award should have undoubtedly been given to Trent Alexander-Arnold. As a 21yr old player who had to depend greatly on his Manager`s directions to develop his talent, he was fully fit to grab the award for his outstanding performances for Liverpool in the premier league. Many players of his age and position could not even do a quarter of what he did. Aside bringing balance into the team, he became a driving force on the flanks and wings as he virtually was a nightmare for many attackers who operated on his side.
In the year under review, Trent Alexander-Arnold at age 21 and playing as a defender, scored 4 goals with 13 assists, completed 2,433 passes with 65.76 passes per match, created 18 big chances and delivered 382 crosses. He had 55 tackles with 70 clearances. He won 100 duels with 221 recoveries. He made 45 interceptions with 17 blocked shots. I strongly believe that Jordan Henderson`s award was for other reasons than football on the pitch and his leadership qualities was surely considered for that.
Trent Alexander-Arnold did a lot to deserve the award as the Writers` player of the year 2019/2020 for a player of his age and position.
By: Ebenezer Essuman