Noel Whelan has touted Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson to take the place of defensive enforcer Fabinho after the Brazilian’s crushing injury blow.

The former Leeds United striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, says that the 26-year-old has been integral to the Reds’ success and replacing him is a near-impossible task.

Liverpool confirmed on Friday that the South American star had suffered ankle ligament damage against Napoli in midweek and is ruled out of action until the new year.

Looking at the available options to Jurgen Klopp, Whelan says that 55-cap Henderson is the most natural replacement to take over the defensive midfield duties at Anfield.

Whelan told Football Insider: “It’s very difficult to fill the shoes of that sort of player because he’s been such an integral part to Jurgen Klopp. 

“He does such a great job protecting the backline, the energy that he brings, breaking up attacks. Without these sort of players, you don’t win titles. Who steps in for a player like that? I’m not sure.

“You could drop Henderson back into that role, we know he can play that role. There’s no doubt it’s a huge blow because he offers so much energy and aggression in there, his composed play, his range of passing, his defensive duties. This will be a huge worry.”

Henderson has been a regular alongside Fabinho in the starting XI this season, playing 17 times across all competitions.

Klopp also has the likes of Naby Keita, James Milner and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to call upon in the middle of the park.

In other Liverpool news, Paul Robinson claims one senior Red is “struggling” to cope at Anfield this season.