Instead Henry opted to move to Barcelona in the summer after deciding to curtail a glittering career with Arsenal.

England midfielder Gerrard was keen to get Henry on board after building a relationship with him when they faced each other for club and country.

"I sent him a few text messages seeing if he fancied it," he said.

"I would have loved to have seen him in a Liverpool shirt, just like the supporters would have.

"But he wanted to play in Spain and for Barcelona, so you had to respect that decision.

"However he's got a lot of respect for Liverpool. He speaks really well about us."

On how they got to know each other well, Gerrard told "Just through the respect from playing against each other.

"One day we swapped numbers and ever since we've been sending each other text messages, had phone calls, we support each other and stuff.

"It is really flattering when a player at that level comes out and gives you a bit of praise.

"He is just settling in at Barcelona now and I'm sure he'll prove again he's one of the best players in the world."