Jordan Henderson praises players who returned to starting XI against Manchester City

Liverpool made five changes from the side that lost the League Cup final on penalties as they ran out 3-0 winners against City in the Premier League.

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson praised all those who started last night's 3-0 win over Manchester City after missing out on the starting XI in the League Cup final at Wembley.

The Reds made five changes from their penalty shoot-out defeat at the weekend with Jon Flanagan, Kolo Toure, Dejan Lovren, Adam Lallana and Divock Orgi all handed starts.

Lallana was involved in all three of Liverpool's goals - including opening the scoring - while a much changed back line kept a clean sheet, and Origi led the line effectively.

Henderson told the official Liverpool website that Jon Flanagan's early challenge on former Red Raheem Sterling helped the home side get on the front foot.

He said: "I think Flanno definitely set the tempo of the game, the fans lifted that extra little bit, and from that point the whole team lifted, so that was a big moment in the game.

"There are a lot of players who came in who didn't play at the weekend and they'll have been disappointed that they didn't play but they've channelled that in the right way.

"They were outstanding."

Certainly there were players were a point to prove. It feels like all of the defenders are fighting for their future in one way or the other - with Toure and Flanagan trying to earn new deals, and Dejan Lovren still has some detractors to win over, while Lallana impressed off the bench at Wembley and Origi is showing he can lead the line effectively, when it has been said that Liverpool are over-reliant on Daniel Sturridge.

It was a case of Liverpool's returning players proving to Jurgen Klopp that he has different options at his disposal as they all try to prove to the manager that they have a future at the club between now and the end of the season, as it seems some changes in the summer are inevitable.

They have provided Klopp with some food for thought in terms of his best side as Liverpool enter another crucial spell in their season. 

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