LONDON, ENGLAND - Friday, November 12, 2021: England's Jordan Henderson (R) celebrates after scoring the third goal during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Qualifying Group I match between England and Albania at Wembley Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Jordan Henderson scores 1, assists 1 in outstanding England display

Jordan Henderson was part of the starting lineup as England thrashed Albania 5-0 in their World Cup qualifier on Friday, scoring one goal and assisting another.

With Gareth Southgate often preferring West Ham midfielder Declan Rice, it is no foregone conclusion that Henderson will start a game for England.

But with Rice unavailable along with Mason Mount and James Ward-Prowse, the Liverpool captain was part of the side to host Albania at Wembley, in the Three Lions’ penultimate World Cup qualifier.

Knowing four points from their final two group games would ensure their place in Qatar next year, England produced an excellent first-half display with Henderson at the forefront.

After Harry Maguire headed home the opener, the Reds’ No. 14 helped double the lead as he raced onto Phil Foden’s pass and clipped the ball up for Harry Kane to convert.

Henderson then made it 3-0 with a stunning goal that saw him weave through challenges in the box before firing in only his second goal for his country.

Kane completed his hat-trick before half-time, his third of the night a brilliant bicycle kick from Foden’s corner.

England failed to add to their tally after the break, but there was no doubt over the result which allowed them to ease to three points as Henderson played the full 90 minutes and ended wearing the captain’s armband.

Trent Alexander-Arnold came off the bench for the final 13, and could be considered for a starting place against San Marino on Monday.

Southgate’s side remain top of Group I, but still need a point to seal progress after Poland’s 4-1 thrashing of Andorra on Friday night.

Denmark and Germany are the only European nations to qualify for the World Cup so far.