Former Lionesses star Jill Scott has hit out at Jordan Henderson after his move to Saudi Arabia.
Speaking on Channel Four on Saturday night as England laboured to a 1-1 draw against Ukraine, the topic of Henderson arose during the pre-match amble.
The midfielder has made headlines this summer after leaving Liverpool to join Al Ettifaq in Saudi Arabia, a country where it is illegal to be homosexual.
Henderson has been branded hypocritical after his past allegiance to various LGBTQ+ charities.
And speaking on the matter, Scott admitted that she could not go see Henderson play because she is a gay woman.
The former Lionesses star, who grew up in Sunderland where Henderson was born, said: “In terms of the morals and values, I’m a really big Jordan Henderson fan, he’s a Sunderland lad and really hard-working.
“But for me, the fact that I couldn’t go and watch him represent his team, that’s what doesn’t sit well for me.
“Football for me is for everyone and the fact that I don’t feel like I would be welcome (to watch him play), that’s a very sad situation.”
England boss Gareth Southgate caused a stir when he named Henderson in his squad this international break.
Not least due to the fact that, despite the millions pumped into the Saudi Pro League, the standard of football is nowhere near an elite level.
Many fans could not believe that other players in top form were not picked such as James Ward-Prowse, who has had a terrific start to life at West Ham.
But Southgate vehemently defended his decision to include Henderson and insisted his experience has been key.
“I don’t pick the team based on external reaction, but he’s a very experienced professional,” the Three Lions boss said.
“He is very mature at handling any situation. He’s trained really well this week. His feeling towards that community hasn’t changed.
“I am sure all of our fans are going to get behind the team when the game starts. I am sure they will get behind Jordan when the game starts as well.”
However, Henderson hardly lit up the turf when named in the starting XI to face Ukraine in a dour 1-1 draw.
England could only muster four shots on target throughout the entire contest as Kyle Walker cancelled out his old teammate Oleksandr Zinchenko’s earlier strike.
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