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Henderson proud of 'most important' goal

ESPN staff
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Liverpoool's defensive worries

Jordan Henderson says he scored the biggest goal of his Liverpool career when he struck the winner against Swansea on Sunday.

The midfielder has been challenged by manager Brendan Rodgers to add more goals to his game after turning in a series of improved performances this season.

Henderson had scored only once in the Premier League all season before Sunday's match, but struck twice in a thrilling 4-3 win over Swansea to keep Liverpool in the title race.

The second of those goals secured a nervy victory that leaves the Reds four points behind leaders Chelsea - who still have to visit Anfield - with 11 games to go.

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Henderson told the Liverpool Echo: "It was a good goal and that's probably the most important one I've scored here.

"I've been trying to arrive in the box a lot more. Luis Suarez's shot came back to me off the defender. The keeper made a good save but I followed it up and managed to score off the rebound.

"I'm trying to improve a lot of things in my game and goal scoring is one of those areas. There's still a lot of work for me to do but I'll keep working hard."

Henderson had a tough start to life at Anfield after then-manager Kenny Dalglish signed him from Sunderland for £16 million in 2011.

But his form has improved vastly this season, and Rodgers expects him to go to the World Cup with England this summer.

Henderson, who figured at Euro 2012 after being called up as a late replacement for injured Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard, is a strong contender for a place in coach Roy Hodgson's squad.

The 23-year-old, though, is focusing for now on ensuring Liverpool, at the very least, qualify for next season's Champions League.

And he has warned that they must improve in defence if they are to achieve that aim.

He added: "There was a lot of pressure on us going into the game with all the other top sides winning.

"We didn't play as well as we can. We gave the ball away sloppily at times. We made some mistakes but at 3-3 we showed a lot of character to keep going and find a winner.

"Going forward we've been brilliant this season but we know we need to defend a lot better as a team. We need to tighten up as a whole team.

"We will work on that during the week and hopefully put that right against Southampton next weekend."

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