With the World Cup less than four months away, the competition for places is heating up. There are many worthy contenders for a berth in the squad and due to the limited number of spaces available, a few players will unfortunately have to miss out.
Jordan Henderson has been a changed man this season. He always was a talented player and his showing for Sunderland prompted Liverpool to pay a hefty fee to secure his services. However, poor performances in unfamiliar roles meant that he was almost let go by Liverpool at the beginning of last season. He decided to fight on and has earned himself a place in the Liverpool team.
However, this season, Henderson has taken his game to the next level, and has been one of the most impressive performers for Liverpool this season. That is some compliment considering the form that Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge have been in. He has been creating chances for the striker duo and has been regularly joining in on attacks.
The English International has a great engine that allows him to keep running for the full 90 minutes every week. One moment he is helping out his defenders and the very next, he is running up field to help his side score a goal. While his shooting hasn’t been the best, he has still managed to hit the target a decent number of times, although he would be disappointed with the return of only 3 goals.
He also does his fair share of the dirty work, hassling and harassing opponents in midfield, sliding into tackles, or even getting back to help out his defenders when required. He has been the complete package this season and has been one of the best performers for Liverpool.
Jack Wilshere had an outstanding season in 2012-13 and was expected by many to transform his talent into more consistent performances. However, that has failed to happen as Wilshere has been overshadowed by the summer arrival of Mesut Ozil and even Aaron Ramsey at the start of the season.
He has since then failed to gather any serious momentum in his performances and has somehow been below par for most of the season. He has contributed much less compared to his other team mates and had been forced to play multiple roles in different parts of the season which hardly helped his cause.
Wilshere’s creativity has been marginalized by the presence of Ozil in the team which has forced him into a deeper and more shackled role and as a result, his numbers have suffered from last season where he was far more central to Arsenal’s cause going forward. Him playing in a deeper role has meant that he is more busy circulating possession as compared to creating chances for his teammates.
However, despite playing in a deeper role, his defensive numbers are pretty poor. He seems to be unwilling to commit into tackles and leaves the dirty work to either Flamini or Arteta. His numbers in terms of defensive actions is pretty horrendous considering he has not been playing as an outright attacking midfielder.
The numbers attest to the fact that Jordan Henderson has had a much better season than Jack Wilshere and given a chance to play, Henderson’s game is more rounded to be effective, especially if England are to play against stronger teams. His direct running and willingness to help out his defenders make him a more suitable candidate for the box to box role should Roy Hodgson choose pick him.
Stats are taken and complied from squawka