The nominees for the prestigious PFA Player of the Year award will be announced next month, and Henry Jackson (@OnFootballTweet) firmly believes several Reds players should be in the running given their tremendous campaigns.
The six most nominated players- voted for by their fellow professionals- will be revealed next month, and there are some very strong contenders in the reckoning for the biggest personal award of the season.
Away from Liverpool, the likes of Eden Hazard, Aaron Ramsey, John Terry and Sergio Aguero have all impressed greatly, and could all make the final six.
Brendan Rodgers’ side have enjoyed a sensational season so far, and are now in with a genuine chance of winning the Premier League for the first time.
Although a large number of individuals in the squad have flourished- Jon Flanagan, Martin Skrtel, Philippe Coutinho and Raheem Sterling all deserve a mention- there are four individuals who have been among the best in the league this season; Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge, Steven Gerrard and Jordan Henderson.
Suarez is the clear favourite to win the award over anyone else in the division. He has been absolutely phenomenal all season, and after his much-publicised problems, he has responded admirably. On current form he is in the top three players on the planet.
In his 24 Premier League appearances, Suarez has scored 25 times since returning from suspension in September. The fact that he doesn’t even take penalties makes it even more impressive.
Whether it be the four goals against Norwich or the wonderful free-kick in the Merseyside derby at Goodison Park, the 27-year-old has been an absolute joy to watch. Without him Liverpool would not be 2nd in the league currently.
If he isn’t named PFA Player of the Year, and the Football Writers’ Footballer of the Year, it will be a travesty.
“Suarez, for me, is up there with Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as one of the best players in the world”- Wayne Rooney
The 24-year-old has been truly brilliant in his time at Anfield so far, scoring for fun and forming one of Europe’s deadliest strike partnerships with Suarez.
Despite missing two months of the season through injury, he has still managed to score 21 goals. When Suarez did have a slight dip in form, Sturridge stepped up to the plate and scored in eight successive league games.
His pace, finishing and general attacking threat make him the country’s most in-form forward at present, and his goals per minute ratio is up there with Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo this season.
As Rodgers starts to build some potentially special at the club, Sturridge is a massively important player both now and in the future.
“He has a wonderful opportunity over the next couple of years to become world class. He has every tool, every quality to be a world class striker.”- Brendan Rodgers
In my opinion, this is the season that Gerrard has cemented himself as Liverpool’s greatest ever player, regardless of whether they win the league title or not. He has led the side tremendously, both on and off the pitch, and is potentially nine games away from the greatest moment of his illustrious career.
Before the turn of the year, when the 33-year-old was out injured, some were questioning Gerrard’s place in the side because of how well they had coped without him. That looks utterly ridiculous now, given how influential he has been of late.
The Reds skipper has tweaked his game to become a deep-lying playmaker, and he has been a revelation in the role. Everything now goes through Gerrard, and the way he controls matches is sublime. His passing, tackling, work-rate and overall ability have made him easily the most influential midfielder in the league since Christmas.
He has shown nerves of steel from the penalty spot in key moments- efforts against Stoke, Fulham and the two against Manchester United stand out- and his 11 goals for the campaign is a very fine return.
Gerrard looks more driven than other player to win the title, and if he does lift the Premier League trophy in May it will be one of the most deserving moments of triumph for a true great of the game.
“Who said Steven Gerard was finished? One of the best players I’ve ever seen.”- Micah Richards
Chances are Henderson won’t be nominated, because his role in the side is so understated, but the 23-year-old has been one of Liverpool’s most important, consistently excellent players all season.
The England international’s progress has been phenomenal over the last 12 months, after such a tough start to life at Anfield. He has gone from facing the exit door to being tipped by many as the potential long-term successor to Gerrard in the Liverpool midfield. A future Reds captain too, perhaps?
Henderson has featured in every Premier League game, and his relentless work-rate, dynamism and quality have been crucial to Rodgers’ tactics. Without him in the side, Liverpool would lose so much of their effectiveness both on and off the ball.
The former Sunderland man plays with a passion and honesty that makes him very likeable, and for the Rodgers’ men to continue their title challenge he will have to remain at his best.
There may be midfielders in the league who are more aesthetically pleasing, and who make more headlines, but there aren’t many who are as important to their team as Henderson is.
“What Henderson does for that team goes unnoticed. For me he was Man of the Match (against United). He was fantastic.”- Graeme Souness
Do you agree that all four deserve to be nominated? Who do you think should win it?