New Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has predicted Adam Lallana will "fly" with Brendan Rodgers' side in the upcoming campaign, after the former Southampton midfielder struggled to play to his potential in his debut season on Merseyside.
Lallana was one of the sensations of the 2013-14 season at St Mary's Stadium, a season that convinced Rodgers to pay around £25m ($39m) to secure his signature as part of the overhaul that followed Luis Suarez's departure to Barcelona.
However, the 27-year-old midfielder failed to make the impact expected, due to a series of injuries. Despite this, he has had a productive pre-season, scoring in games against True Thai All Stars and Brisbane Roar, and Henderson thinks this form will continue.
"It was hard for Adam. Last year he got an injury so he didn't really have a good pre-season under his belt and when he came back he was always trying to fight and get back fit and he then picked up one or two niggles during the season," Henderson said to Liverpool TV.
"I felt a bit sorry for him last season but Adam is a top, top player. He's got great quality and he's got great knowledge of the game. He's a good lad as well and I'm sure he will work really hard this pre-season and come the first game of the season I'm sure he will be flying. I've told him that I'm expecting big things from him this season."
Lallana managed just 23 Premier League starts last year. Nevertheless, the England international did score five goals, including a stunning brace in the 4-1 victory over Swansea.
"I say that because he's a fantastic player. I first saw him when I was in the England squad and I got a bit of a shock as to how good he was with both feet," Henderson said. "A lot of people come up to me in training, whether it's here or with England, and always mention him. He's a top quality player and he's a big player for us this season.
"We see every day in training what he's capable of. We saw glimpses of it last season but those injuries sort of knocked him off track a little bit, but I've told him this season is his season. It's a big season for him, he knows that, but I'm sure he's got more than enough ability and enough work rate to achieve that."