Liverpool Transfers: £6million Reasons Jose Enrique Is a Bargain Buy for Reds

Yoosof Farah@@YoosofFarahSenior Writer IIIAugust 12, 2011

Liverpool Transfers: £6million Reasons Jose Enrique Is a Bargain Buy for Reds

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    Liverpool's quest for a top notch left-back is finally over after the Reds secured the £6million bargain capture of Jose Enrique from Premier League rivals Newcastle United.

    The 25-year-old Spaniard's transfer has ended Kenny Dalglish's left-back problem, with Fabio Aurelio unable to step up to the mark and John Flanagan not yet experienced enough to hold down a regular starting position.

    Here's why the player Newcastle is taking a £300,000 loss on will prove an unassailable bargain for Liverpool.

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Tackles Won

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    Last season in the Premier League, Jose Enrique won 50 tackles for Newcastle United, more than any other defender for his team apart from Fabio Coloccini.

    And besides Glen Johnson who won just one more tackle, Enrique also made more successful tackles than any Liverpool defender with a tackle success rate of 84 percent, higher than any Reds' defender, and the reason why he was only dribbled past nine times throughout the whole of last season.

    Considering the Spaniard only conceded 15 fouls in the league during the last campaign (despite starting 36 matches), it's clear the former Valencia man only goes in for the tackle when he's sure he can win it, backed up by the fact he goes 51.2 minutes per tackle every match.

    With the Reds having conceded more league goals than all of the Top Four in the 2010/11 season, Enrique's considered and accurate approach to tackling could well help the Anfield side become more watertight ahead of the new campaign.

Key Passes

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    Having made 29 key passes for Newcastle last season, Jose Enrique is the sixth most successful attacking defender in the Premier League.

    The 25-year-old made more key passes than any Liverpool defender, with Glen Johnson making 24 and the next Reds defender after him, Fabio Aurelio, only making nine.

    It's a statistic which bodes well for both Enrique and Liverpool, as the Toon's ever changing and inconsistent front-line last season meant the Spaniard could only claim one assist.

    With the potential for more assists evidently in him, the chances are his signing could well boost the Reds' front line as well as his own assist tally, with talented duo Luis Suarez and Andy Carroll having had half a season to find a cohesive rhythm up front.

    And it's something which will come in vital for Liverpool, considering they scored less goals than all of the Top Four last season, and 19 less than champions Manchester United.

Successful Passes

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    As well as having evident assist-making ability in him, Jose Enrique is also one of the best around for starting attacks from the back.

    Last season he made 1248 successful passes, more than any Liverpool defender. Only Martin Skrtel came close with 1152 successful passes, with the next best, Glen Johnson, lagging way behind with 839.

    His superb-passing ability will again be of significant benefit in helping the Reds score more goals, and considering Kenny Dalglish has signed more goalscoring midfielders in the shape of Charlie Adam and Stewart Downing, along with Raul Meireles having had a year to assimilate to Liverpool life, the goals could well be flowing in for the Anfield club. 

Fouls Won

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    Yet another thing Jose Enrique can do better than any Liverpool defender is draw fouls off opponents, winning his team vital free-kicks, corners and penalties.

    Last season he won 34 fouls, three more than Glen Johnson and 13 more than next best ranked player, Martin Skrtel.

    It's partly what helped Newcastle United win 512 fouls, the second most in the Premier League behind Everton (who won 528), and ultimately finish a very good 12th with a surprisingly high tally of 56 goals.

    And for the first half of the season, it was part of the reason why Andy Carroll managed to get 11 league goals and earn that £35million transfer to Liverpool.

    Now that Enrique is united with the Englishman, more of the same from the Spaniard could well mean more of the same from Carroll and his free-scoring teammates.  


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    Last season Jose Enrique played 36 league matches for Newcastle United, of which he started all of them and racked up 3125 minutes of game time.

    Pepe Reina and Martin Skrtel aside, he made more appearances and played more minutes than any Liverpool player, with Jamie Carragher and Glen Johnson the next most durable defenders having played in 28 league games throughout the 2010/11 campaign.

    And considering the Spaniard is set to enter the peak of his career both in footballing and athletic terms within the next season or two, he could well become an even more durable asset for the Reds, with consistency in defence vital for any team.

    It all makes his £6million signing almost certainly one of the biggest bargains of the summer, especially compared to when Owen Hargreaves signed for Manchester United in a £17million deal four years ago. 

Easy Integration

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    Jose Enrique's integration into the Liverpool squad will be made all the more comfortable and easier with the presence of his former teammate Andy Carroll, as well as several of his native Spaniards and Spanish-speakers.

    With Luis Suarez, Pepe Reina, Maxi Rodriguez, Daniel Pacheco and Emiliano Insua all among the Melwood ranks, Enrique shouldn't have too many problems on the pitch if he still isn't up to speed with the English language.

    And off it, being surrounded with similar people should also help him feel more at home, which again will ultimately aid him on the field of play.