- The former Liverpool skipper started for the four-time European Cup winners
- Steven Berghuis gave the hosts the lead before Luuk De Jong restored parity
- Mauricio Pochettino wanted to sign three players in the transfer window but ended up with NONE - It's All Kicking Off Transfer Week podcast
From Liverpool to Amsterdam via Dammam in Saudi Arabia, Jordan Henderson made his debut for Ajax in a 1-1 draw against PSV in front of England manager Gareth Southgate who made the trip to the Netherlands.
Henderson started for Ajax against the league leaders, who are unbeaten in the Eredivisie this season and remain 21 points ahead of the hosts.
The 33-year-old played in a defensive midfield role for the full game and nearly had an instant impact with a lofted through ball to Kenneth Taylor, who failed to convert.
Minutes later, Henderson was involved in the move from which Ajax captain Steven Berghuis gave John van ‘t Schip’s side the lead, before PSV equalised through Luuk De Jong though neither side was able to force a winner.
It was the first game for the England midfielder since playing for Al Ettifaq against Al Hazem in Saudi Arabia in December and his introduction pre-match at the Johan Cruyff Arena was met with the loudest cheer out of any of the Ajax players from a crowd of over 50,000.
Jordan Henderson made his debut for Ajax in a creditable 1-1 draw against runaway leaders PSV
The home side took the lead after 19 minutes through Steven Berghuis in Amsterdam
Such has been the buzz around the Premier League and Champions League-winning captain that since Henderson arrived in Amsterdam just over a fortnight ago, his shirt has become the fastest-selling jersey in Ajax’s history while pillows, bedsheets and towels with Henderson and the number six on them have all sold out in the club shop.
Southgate was accompanied by his close friend and former Nottingham Forest manager Steve Cooper in Amsterdam.
In October, the England boss said he could not understand why England fans booed Henderson during a friendly against Australia at Wembley and in public, he has backed the former Liverpool captain ever since his contentious decision to leave for the Middle East.
Though questions remain whether Henderson still justifies a place in the England squad ahead of Euro 2024 in Germany and in this 90-minute display against the best side in the Eredivisie, Henderson delivered a trademark performance with constant energy and getting involved in the transition from defence to attack.
England manager Gareth Southgate was in attendance, alongside his friend and former Nottingham Forest boss Steve Cooper
Given the size of PSV’s advantage at the top of the Dutch league, Henderson is unlikely to face a tougher test for the remainder of the season unless Ajax progress in the Europa Conference League.
Henderson, who left Liverpool for Saudi last summer, terminated his three-year contract with Al Ettifaq in January after playing just 17 games in the Saudi Pro League citing that ‘it was very much a football decision.’
The former Liverpool skipper signed for Ajax on a free transfer last month but missed their 4-1 win against RKC Waalwijk with work permit issues and he wasn’t risked for their 4-2 win against Heracles last weekend as the game was played on artificial turf.
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