Ahead of Liverpool's Champions League final in Kiev, captain Jordan Henderson revealed he broke down in tears when offered the chance to leave the club under Brendan Rodgers.
The 27-year-old Englishman is seen as an integral part of the Reds' side now, having played 207 league games for the team since joining from Sunderland in 2011.
However, Henderson has not always been so highly valued at Anfield and revealed that he was offered an exit from the club as part of a swap deal with Fulham for Clint Dempsey under Rodgers.
"Brendan called me in and said 'listen, this is the offer' and he asked me what I thought," he told the Daily Mail, "It implied to me that he would let me leave and it was up to me. I went back to my room. I shed a few tears. I ended up crying a little bit because it hurt so much. I had the game that night to think about it as well."
Henderson admits that it was difficult to contemplate his future at that moment, understanding he was being given an opportunity to revive his career at Craven Cottage, but knowing he wanted nothing more than to stay and fight for his place at Anfield.
"I spoke to my agent and told him what had happened and I said I didn't want to go. I wanted to stay and fight and try and improve and try to prove the manager wrong. My agent agreed. I spoke to my dad. He was gutted but he backed my decision to stay and fight.
"From that point, I just kept my head down. I knew I wouldn't get as much game time as I wanted but I still had faith. I was young enough to get my head down, keep working hard, do my extra bits and prove them wrong and I feel I managed to do that by the time Brendan left."
Henderson describes the experience as a defining moment in his career, and life, that has gotten him to where he is today - set to start against Real Madrid in a Champions League final and play a key role in England's World Cup campaign this summer in Russia.
"There are always those moments in football - and life in general - which can decide the path and the route you go down. For me it was never an option to leave."