herald

Friday 28 November 2014

Enrique making splash in 'Pool midfield: Rodgers

LIVERPOOL manager Brendan Rodgers believes defender José Enrique has provided an example of what can be achieved through hard work and commitment.

The Spaniard's future at Anfield appeared to be in doubt at the start of the season after he failed to hold down a first-team place.

However, Enrique has started the past five Premier League matches, scored his first Reds goal 10 days ago and would have doubled his tally at Swansea on Sunday had it not been for a debatable offside flag.

"I think he has been outstanding," said Rodgers, who has played the 25-year-old in a more advanced role recently in the hope it will add more goals to midfield.

"It is a great credit to him because he and I spoke earlier in the season about trying to improve his game.

"Further up the field he is a real threat going forward with his pace and power and you can see in the last three games how determined he is to get a goal.

"Every player will have a preferred position but I think he has the qualities to play the (midfield) role as he is not a defensive left-back. He is comfortable in the position, which is important, and it gives us a great thrust at the top end of the field."

Pivotal

Striker Luis Suarez's league-leading 10 goals have been pivotal to Liverpool's improvement but the goals from midfield have not materialised.

Just five league goals -- which includes Enrique's strike against Wigan -- have been scored by midfielders and Rodgers knows it is an issue which must be addressed.

"We are just looking to improve how clinical we can be in those areas," added Rodgers.

"I am not going to dwell on as it is highlighted often enough, we just have to keep working."

Victory at seventh-placed Tottenham, just four points ahead, tonight would be a major boost.

"It is a big game against a rival as Tottenham have been up in or around that top four for the last few seasons," said the Northern Irishman.

"If you go away to one of your rivals and win, that can give you great confidence."

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