The midfielder has been widely criticised for moving to Al-Ettifaq this summer, although Southgate praised Henderson’s performance against Ukraine and claimed his “outputs” were the highest of his entire England career during the game in Poland.
Southgate and his England staff studied Henderson closely in training and it seems he is happy to rely on data at the moment, as there are no plans for him to fly to Saudi to watch the Liverpool man personally.
When naming Henderson in his squad for the Ukraine and Scotland games, Southgate had admitted he should travel to Saudi to watch him personally “at some point” but qualified it by saying he would seek guidance on whether or not that would be appropriate from the Football Association.
A trip to Saudi by Southgate would prompt scrutiny, given the controversy surrounding the fact homosexuality is illegal and can be punishable by death.
Faced with that, Southgate last month said: “I hadn’t thought about that. Who would actually decide whether that’s acceptable or not? I can follow the games as we do on a television system. If I’m doing my job correctly then I should be visiting Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Saudi to see Hendo. If I’m advised that it’s not acceptable then I’d have to accept that.”
Crystal Palace are sweating on the fitness of their England defender Marc Guehi, who was forced off at half-time in Scotland with a problem around his groin and hip area. He will have a scan and could be a doubt for the trip to Aston Villa on Saturday.