Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson ‘absolutely central’ to Players Together movement but wants no credit

Jordan Henderson has been the driving force behind (Photo by Jon Hobley/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has been the central figure in creating the Players Together initiative for Premier League players to raise money for the NHS, but wants no credit for his work.

It was announced on Wednesday that top flight players have teamed up with NHS Charities Together to ‘distribute funds quickly and efficiently to where they are needed most’.

There had been increasing calls for footballers to contribute to the health crisis, with health secretary Matt Hancock asking them to ‘play their part’ and they certainly have, after working quietly and effectively to create Players Together over the last week.

Henderson was reported to be the man leading the campaign last week and the Telegraph has since reported: ‘He won’t want the praise and will be the first to say it’s very much a collective effort but Jordan Henderson has been absolutely central to coordinating all of this. Ask any players/people involved and they will all say the same thing.’

The 29-year-old took it upon himself to contact other Premier League captains and high-profile players to get them on board with the idea, before liaising with the NHS to work out how best to use the money collected.

On Monday, before the announcement of Players Together, the Times wrote: ‘I trust Henderson, the prime mover behind Premier League players’ desire to establish a fighting fund for the NHS. I believe in him to do the right thing in the increasingly tawdry salary cuts’ stand-off with clubs. Players have to offset wages, the sport requires it, the NHS needs it, and the responsible Henderson will eventually deliver.’

He has done so, but with little pomp and circumstance, simply tweeting the message of Players Together.

While the Reds captain is asking for no praise, he is certainly getting it, including from Gary Lineker, who tweeted on Wednesday: ‘Great job @JHenderson.’

Lineker added: ‘Footballers are doing their bit as I was confident they would. Let’s hope that others that are in a position to help, those that weren’t unfairly targeted, do likewise. Proud of our players.

‘Absolutely brilliant. Well played to each and every one of them. Young men setting the right example.’

A collective statment, posted by many players on social media read: ‘Over the course of the last week we, as a group of Premier League players, have held numerous talks together with the vision of creating a contribution fund that can be used to distribute money to where it’s needed most in this Covid19 crisis; helping those fighting for us on the NHS frontline as well as other key areas of need,’ a statement read.

‘This is a critical time for our country and for our NHS, and we are determined to help in any way that we can.

‘We can confirm that after extensive conversations between a huge number of players from all Premier League clubs we have created our own collective player initiative, #PlayersTogether, and have partnered with NHS Charities Together (NHSCT) in order to assist them in generating and distributing funds quickly and efficiently to where they are needed most.

‘NHSCT is the national umbrella organisation for over 150 registered NHS charities, working closely with the Charity Commission, Demartment of Health and Social Care, and NHS England to represent, champion, and suport the NHS’ official charities. NHSCT are the official charity partner of the NHS nationally.

‘The contributions that this initiative will generate will help NHSCT quickly grant funds to the front line to support in a number of ways, including to help enhance the well-being of NHS staff, volunteers and patients impacted by Covid-19 as well as helping them in their work supporting many other critical areas of need both now and in the longer term.

‘#PlayersTogether is about we, as players, collaborating together to create a voluntary initiative separate to any club and league conversations, that can help get much needed funds to those that need it right now. To try and help, along with so many others in the country, make a real difference.

‘Our prayers and thoughts go out to everybody affected by this crisis. By sticking together, we will get through this. Stay home. Protect the NHS. Save Lives.’

MORE: Premier League stars launch #PlayersTogether movement to donate to NHS amid coronavirus crisis

MORE: Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson organising Premier League coronavirus fund for NHS

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