Stefan Savic Says Jordan Henderson Was 'Disrespectful' to Montenegro Players

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistMarch 27, 2019

England's Jordan Henderson runs with the ball during the Euro 2020 group A qualifying soccer match between Montenegro and England at the City Stadium in Podgorica, Montenegro, Monday, March 25, 2019. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)
Darko Vojinovic/Associated Press

Stefan Savic feels "very bad to be playing the same sport as some players" and has branded England international and Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson "disrespectful."

Former Manchester City centre-back Savic has accused Henderson of showing a dismissive attitude to his Montenegro teammates.

The Three Lions beat Montenegro 5-1 away in a qualifier for UEFA Euro 2020 on Monday, but Savic wasn't impressed by Henderson's attitude, per Daniel Murphy of the Manchester Evening News:

"Jordan Henderson, for example, sarcastically told our player after one normal clash he would give him a jersey after the match. It is ugly and disrespectful. I told him he was good enough not to act like that."

"We are proud, and I'd rather play with this team and concede five goals and not with some arrogant players from England."

Savic feels England players didn't show Montenegro players the necessary respect.
Savic feels England players didn't show Montenegro players the necessary respect.Darko Vojinovic/Associated Press

Savic felt 28-year-old Henderson acted as though he was above the opposition. The skipper's complaint comes after a game marred by instances of racial abuse directed toward City forward Raheem Sterling, Tottenham Hotspur left-back Danny Rose and Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi.

The latter, still just 18, was making his full England debut. Chelsea offered the precocious academy graduate counselling after the international fixture, per BBC Sport's Alistair Magowan.

European Football's governing body responded by charging Montenegro:

Martyn Ziegler @martynziegler

UEFA announces charges against Montenegro including racism by fans towards England players. Minimum sanction is partial stadium closure: https://t.co/tY1SP6SQQq

Both coaches had differing views on the accusations of racist chanting from the stands. England boss Gareth Southgate told BBC Radio 5 Live (h/t BBC Sport) he'd heard the "unacceptable" abuse Rose was subjected to.

Meanwhile, Montenegro manager Ljubisa Tumbakovic said he didn't "hear or notice any" racist chanting.

Savic's critique of Henderson is unlikely to put a mark against the ex-Sunderland star's 50th cap for his country. However, the defender's comment about the arrogance of the opposition may not go over well since he struggled during a brief stint in England's top flight.

While he didn't make the grade with City during the 2011/12 campaign, Savic has since revived his career with Atletico. He helped the Madrid club reach the UEFA Champions League final in 2016.

Henderson is said to have been unhappy with some of the challenges during the game.
Henderson is said to have been unhappy with some of the challenges during the game.Michael Regan/Getty Images

Yet things haven't exactly been going as smoothly for the defender at club level recently.

Savic is said to have clashed with Atleti fitness coach Oscar Ortega before a 1-0 win over Leganes earlier this month. The player reportedly said "say it to my face, you rat," before throwing a boot at his coach, per AS (h/t Football Espana).