HE has twice kept Raheem Sterling quiet and teamed up with Gareth Bale for the first time. It has been quite a month for Adam Henley, and he does not want his progress to stop there.

Rovers’ FA Cup run came to an end on Wednesday night as Liverpool earned a narrow 1-0 win at Ewood Park in a quarter final replay, but for Henley there were no shortage of positives to take.

A boyhood Liverpool fan, it was the right back who took the man of the match honours in the replay - an award that was fully deserved after keeping England star Sterling under wraps.

He had done the same in the first match, a 0-0 draw at Anfield.

All against the same Sterling who has been the talk of the country in recent weeks, after turning down the offer of a new £100,000 a week contract from Liverpool.

“I thought Adam Henley over two games with Raheem Sterling was nothing short of magnificent,” said his manager Gary Bowyer.

“Fair play to him, he was man of the match, over the two games he kept Raheem as quiet as he possibly could.

“I know there’s contract negotiations going on with Raheem but I’ve told Adam ‘Don’t be coming in knocking off my door asking for the same money!’.

“His face dropped when I said that, but that’s the progress the lad’s made and we’re delighted with that.”

For Henley there was disappointment at the result, but obvious pride at the way he had pitted his wits against Sterling.

“He’s a top class player and he’s all over the news at the moment, so for me I couldn’t ask for anything more,” said Henley.

“I love coming up against players like that because it’s a great way for me to test myself and try to push to that next level.

“I knew I could do the job, and it was all about concentrating and making sure I didn’t slip up.

“I was happy with my performance and managing to keep such a world class player quiet is something everyone in my position wants to do.

“The whole team put in one hell of a performance and the fans were fantastic.”

In between the two matches against Liverpool, Henley had been called into the Wales squad for only the second time, and the first time since a friendly against Mexico in the summer of 2012.

Bale was not involved in the squad for that game, but Henley linked up with the world’s most expensive player for the first time when he travelled with Wales for their European Championship qualifier in Israel a fortnight ago.

The Rovers defender was an unused substitute but enjoyed training alongside Bale and hopes he is on track for his Wales debut.

“The goal is to keep on improving and keep putting in solid performances, then hopefully everything will fall into place and I’ll get that opportunity,” he said.

“It was amazing to be around players like that. All it does is take your own game on another level. I’d love to carry on being involved in the squad and just improve as a player.

“It was a fantastic experience to be involved. At my age especially it’s all about learning.”

Rovers travel to Reading in the Championship tomorrow, although their play-off hopes look over.

Henley, though, wants to finish the season well.

“As a team we can work off the back of the Liverpool performance and really look to end the season on a real positive note in terms of our performances,” he said.

“You can’t give up on a season. We’ve still got six games to go and everyone takes pride in their performances.”