Rodgers: Suspended Henderson still vital for Liverpool

The England international will miss the Reds’ next three matches after being given a straight red card for a reckless challenge late on against Manchester City

Suspended midfielder Jordan Henderson still has a vital role to play in Liverpool’s title challenge, according to manager Brendan Rodgers.

Henderson will miss the next three Premier League fixtures after receiving a three-match ban for a red card picked up during Liverpool’s thrilling 3-2 victory over title rivals Manchester City at Anfield last week.

The 23-year-old is sidelined for Sunday’s trip to Norwich City as well as fixtures against Chelsea and Crystal Palace, but he is free to play in the season-ending clash against Newcastle.

Liverpool are two points clear of Chelsea at the summit with four games remaining.

Despite being unavailable, Henderson will travel with the squad as they look to claim their first league title in 24 years.

“Even though we’ll lose him on the field we can’t lose his personality off the field as well which is why he’ll still travel and be a part of what we’re doing,” said Rodgers.

“Jordan will still travel with the team. I’ve told him he’s a vital member of the group and he might not be able to effect the next three games on the field but he’s going to be very important for our changing room, our travelling and our hotels because he’s very much a part of us.”

Liverpool are also likely to be without star striker Daniel Sturridge, who is still recovering from a hamstring injury.

The Merseyside club have enjoyed great success against Norwich in recent years, scoring five goals in each of their past three consecutive league meetings.

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