Arsenal have emerged as the frontrunners to acquire Jordan Henderson, as the Liverpool captain confronts unexpected doubts over his long-term future at Anfield.

The 31-year-old joined Liverpool from Sunderland in 2011 and has developed into a pivotal role for Jurgen Klopp, despite some early criticism. Indeed, the England international guided Liverpool to Champions League glory, followed by their first top-flight championship in 30 years the following season.

Henderson’s current deal, though, expires in two years. And rumors over the weekend indicated that talks on a new agreement had reached a stalemate.

The Athletic reports that extension negotiations are continuing, but that Liverpool’s owners, FSG, have more pressing concerns at the moment.

Not re-signing one of their most essential players would be a huge mistake, according to one former Liverpool great.

Henderson’s position is comparable to that of former Liverpool midfielder Gini Wijnaldum. This resulted in the Holland international running down his contract and signing for PSG on a free transfer this summer.

To that reason, there are already serious concerns that Henderson may follow suit – with several prominent clubs reportedly watching developments at Anfield.

Arsenal is one of those teams, with bookies ranking them as early frontrunners to recruit the midfielder.

At this point, there is no indication that Henderson will leave this summer. However, if a new agreement is not reached soon, concerns will increase.

Michael Edwards, the club’s sporting director, also has a busy few months ahead of him. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, two of Liverpool’s star attackers, are among the other players whose contracts expire in 2023.

Indeed, Roberto Firmino, Naby Keita, and Alex Oxlade-fates Chamberlain’s must also be decided quickly.

Liverpool are in a four-way race to sign Chelsea’s prodigy

Meanwhile, according to a source, Liverpool and Leeds are locked in a four-way fight to sign a Chelsea player who is expected to depart Stamford Bridge this summer.

In recent years, Chelsea have been associated with effectively navigating the transfer market under financial fair play. When combined with their reputation for producing some of the world’s most intriguing talent, up and coming kids often establish themselves early in their careers away from the club.

Whether it is on loan, as was the case with Fikayo Tomori and Mario Pasalic, or on a permanent basis, as was the case with Tariq Lamptey, varies per instance.

Valentino Livramento, Lewis Bate, and Myles Peart-Harris are three more names that may tread that same route.

The Athletic has claimed that the trio is considering permanent departures from Chelsea.

They are reportedly delaying contract negotiations and have been excluded from the club’s pre-season training camp.

According to the Daily Mail, the line of potential bidders for central midfielder Bate is starting to form.

Liverpool, Leeds, West Ham, and Southampton are all reportedly interested in signing the 19-year-old.

A Liverpool transfer would be comparable to Dominic Solanke’s 2017 club swap. At Anfield, the striker was unsuccessful. Though the Reds eventually earn £16 million from his transfer to Bournemouth in 2019.