Jordan Henderson's contributions to Liverpool's successes under Jurgen Klopp are undeniable. Not only is he an excellent leader, but he has also significantly improved his play, becoming a vital part of the team's midfield. The Englishman set the standards in the middle of the park in terms of work ethic and efficiency.
His hardworking nature and tenacity on the field make him a valuable asset to the team. However, Henderson is now 32 and is past his prime. It is essential for Liverpool to find a replacement for him in midfield.
The Merseysiders will need to overhaul their midfield and rejig their squad if they are to replicate their successes over the past few years. Without further ado, let's take a look at five players who could replace Jordan Henderson at Liverpool.
#5 Youri Tielemans (Leicester City)
Youri Tielemans has definitely suffered from a dip in form this season. It has been a contributing factor to Leicester City's struggles in the Premier League this season.
The Belgium international's contract with the Foxes expires this summer and he is set to become a free agent at the end of the season. At 25, Tielemans could be a great replacement for Jordan Henderson. He has plenty of years left in his tank and comes with a great deal of Premier League experience as well.
The combative midfielder has been linked with Liverpool multiple times in the past and they should go all in for him, especially if he is available on a free transfer in the summer.
#4 Sandro Tonali (AC Milan)
Sandro Tonali has been a long-term transfer target for Liverpool. Tonali has emerged as one of Europe's finest young midfielders and he is only 22 years old. The Italy international played a key role in AC Milan's Serie A triumph last term and has quickly established himself as one of the best 'registas' in Italy.
Tonali has reportedly named Thiago Alcantara as one of his inspirations in the past. Liverpool could entice him with the prospect of playing alongside one of his idols. The Rossoneri are likely to demand a huge fee if Liverpool come knocking for him as they are unlikely to be ready to part with him.
Tonali has been in good form so far this term, scoring two goals and providing seven assists in 23 appearances in all competitions.
#3 Declan Rice (West Ham United)
Here's another player who'll vastly improve Liverpool's midfield and be a great replacement for Jordan Henderson. Unfortunately, Declan Rice will cost the Merseysiders a fortune as he is West Ham United's most prized asset.
Rice is the kind of defensive midfielder who sets up a platform that enables his teammates to shine. He is a tireless worker at the center of the pitch and he'll make sure Liverpool's midfield doesn't get run through as it has in recent times.
As a defensive-minded player who is neat with his passing and is efficient in possession, Rice is a great option for Liverpool if they are looking for a long-term replacement for Henderson. The youngster should also be ready to seek out a new challenge in the summer and that could help drive down his price.
#2 Matheus Nunes (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Matheus Nunes joined Wolverhampton Wanderers from Sporting Lisbon this past summer. Teams like Chelsea, Liverpool, and West Ham United were also credited with an interest in him. Nunes has impressed in his early days at Wolves and it seems to have earned Klopp's attention once again.
According to Ryan Taylor of The Express (via TeamTalk), Liverpool might swoop in for Nunes before the end of the month. He went on to claim that Wolves are looking to rope in Joao Gomes as a potential replacement for Nunes.
The Molineux outfit will want to make a profit on the €45 million they shelled out to sign him in the summer. Nunes could be a good replacement for Henderson. He possesses an excellent passing range and is a capable ball progressor.
Like Henderson, he possesses a great reading of the game and this allows him to make interceptions and break up play on a consistent basis.
#1 Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund)
Jude Bellingham is arguably the finest young midfield prospect in Europe right now. His incredible performances for Borussia Dortmund had already earned him a lot of plaudits, but his stocks have risen exponentially by virtue of his scintillating displays for England at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
The 19-year-old has garnered interest from several European giants including Liverpool, Real Madrid, Manchester United, and Chelsea. In 23 appearances in all competitions so far for Borussia Dortmund this term, Bellingham has scored 10 goals and provided four assists.
Not only is Bellingham a creative and efficient midfielder, but he is also excellent at tracking back and turning over possession for his side. He would be the ideal long-term replacement for Henderson.