Brendan Rodgers has revealed the details of his conversations with Jordan Henderson amid the Liverpool midfielder being offered an exit in the summer in 2012 to go to Fulham.
The Reds were negotiating with the west London club at the time for striker Clint Dempsey and Martin Jol said that the deal would go ahead if Henderson were included in a cash-plus-player transfer situation.
And Rodgers says that while he offered Henderson the England international insisted he wanted to stay at Liverpool and prove himself which the manager believes has made him a much better player.
"I remember the conversation I had with him, bless him," Rodgers told the Liverpool Echo. "We were at the hotel and it was towards the end of the (transfer) window. I pulled him in and I told him: 'Listen, I am not pushing you out but this offer has come in.'
"But I got the response I wanted. He told me that he wanted to stay here and fight. I told him I would help him improve as a player and improve his game because he has got all the tools.
"At 23 years of age, he has got his whole career in front of him. It is thanks to his quality and professionalism that he is making marked improvements."
Henderson has become an integral member of the Liverpool line-up and has completed a career turnaround for the club in which at one stage he appeared to be another of Kenny Dalglish's signings who would be sacrificed as they moved forward from the legendary manager's tenure.
But he is now getting regular game time as well as constantly being on the radar for England manager Roy Hodgson. The 23 year old has been selected for the friendlies against Chile and Germany and Rodgers believes he has grown at Liverpool.
"I just see a young player that is athletically good, technically strong," he explained. "Tactically he is aware now of the game. He can participate in the game, he knows when to move inside and outside.
"Tactically his understanding of the game is much, much better.
"That is a massive credit to him because he is working very hard, listening and wanting to be a better player."