Social media reacts to controversial Jordan Henderson interview

Jordan Henderson spoke out in the British press for the first time following his move to Al Ettifaq this summer.

The 33-year-old former Liverpool captain's switch to the Saudi Pro League back in July was, you won't need reminding, fraught with controversy.

Leaving Liverpool in pre-season, Henderson left the club he joined in 2011 without a proper goodbye, while Jurgen Klopp and the recruitment team at Anfield spent much of the summer scrambling to find replacements after both his and Fabinho's unexpected departures.

Additionally, as a prominent ally for the LGBTQ+ community during his time as the Reds' skipper, Henderson faced a backlash for a perceived betrayal of his previous work – which included wearing rainbow laces and captain's armband, as well as speaking up on inclusivity issues in football.

READ MORE: Jordan Henderson – Liverpool legend with a tainted legacy

Addressing the controversy around his move for the first time, Henderson sat down with the Athletic's Adam Crafton and David Ornstein for a wide-ranging interview – selected highlights from which can be read here.

In summary, Henderson insisted he didn't feel loved at Liverpool, denied that he has gone to Al Ettifaq for the money and admitted he 'understands the anger' over his move Saudi Arabia (a country where homosexuality is illegal), but claimed his presence in Saudi Arabia is a 'positive thing'.

While the idea of the England midfielder sitting down to face the press in a no holds barred exchange might have sounded like an admirable thing to do, the content of his answers (or lack thereof) has left many fans frustrated.

Here's how X (better known as Twitter) reacted to that interview.

The interview marks the latest chapter in the sad redefining of Henderson's status from Liverpool legend and social justice champion to just another pawn in the sportswashing machine.

Following his £12m transfer, England LGBTQ+ fan group 3 Lions Pride vowed to remove their banner of the former Sunderland star, branding him a 'sell out', while Thomas Hitzlsperger – the former Everton and Aston Villa midfielder who came out in 2013 – tweeted questioning whether Henderson's activism was ever genuine.

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