Just a year after Jordan Henderson arrived at Anfield the possibility of a move to Fulham was mooted, but it was never a consideration for a player who had a point to prove.
A swap deal with Clint Dempsey was reported deal with Fulham back in 2012, but it never truly got off the ground as Henderson only had eyes of succeeding at Anfield.
Then 22, it could have gone any number of ways for the No. 14 but he credits the assistance of Brendan Rodgers for changing his trajectory at Liverpool after showing the desire to have a lasting impact.
“No chance. I didn’t really consider it,” Henderson told GQ Magazine. “I’d been at Liverpool just over a year, I still had a long time left on my contract and it wasn’t something that I was willing to entertain.
“To be honest, Brendan was good in that situation. He said he would help me develop and improve as a player, which he certainly did, so I’ve got a lot to thank him for.
“I’m not going to sugar-coat it, it was a difficult time [those first few years]. I had personal issues, I wasn’t playing to the standard I was capable of and it was tough.”
A sliding doors moment that would form the foundation for the career Henderson has since gone on to have at Anfield with a total of 406 appearances and five honours.
More than 10 years later and the captain doesn’t “know where the time’s gone,” but the desire to “keep playing” for Liverpool is still as strong as it has always been.
“It’s a great honour for me personally, and for my family, to have achieved that at Liverpool [more than 400 appearances and 200 games as captain],” Henderson continued.
“Physically, I feel very good and throw in all the experience I’ve had over the years and I’m happy with where I’m at.
“I live right, I eat right, I train hard and I look after myself, so hopefully I will give myself every chance to keep playing.
“I knew how big the club was and that it was a fantastic opportunity, but I always wanted to be at Anfield for as long as possible.
“I thought it would be difficult, especially in the early stages, but, to be honest, I didn’t think it would be as tough as it was.”
In the summer, Henderson signed a new contract that will keep him at Anfield until 2025, beyond his 35th birthday in what was a huge show of faith that he can remain a key player for many more years to come.