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Liverpool star away on International duty ‘is confident’ of teammates filling the void in his absence

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By Aishwarya Kannan

Wataru Endo believes his teammates will step up and fill the void of his absence in Liverpool

Liverpool’s Japanese footballer Wataru Endo has proven to be one of the star players of this season, fitting well as a defensive midfielder in the tactics of the Reds boss, Jurgen Klopp. The Japan international signed for Klopp’s team at the end of the summer transfer window last year when the German head coach was revamping the Merseyside’s entire midfield.

The midfielder moved to Liverpool from VB Stuttgart last August. The Reds were fresh in the wake of Jordan Henderson’s and Fabinho’s departure. Additionally, Klopp was known for preferring young talents to mentor and mould into finer players. Hence, signing Endo was an unexpected move met with much skepticism. However, his style of play synced well with Klopp’s system and his fellow midfielders Dominik Szoboszlai and Alexis Mac Allister have proven to be a formidable midfield this season.

However, he will not be at the club for another month as he has shifted his focus on the Japanese national team in the race to win the Asia Cup. With Szoboszlai benched with a hamstring injury and Kostas Tsimikas also benched due to an injury, Endo’s departure hits harder for the Anfield side.

Wataru Endo of Liverpool
Wataru Endo of Liverpool

Wataru Endo believes his absence will not stop Liverpool from dominating the season

However, the 30-year-old is not worried about the Reds losing their tempo in his absence. As quoted by The Athletic [subscription required], Endo expressed his wish to prove himself in the Japanese national team and his confidence in his fellow teammates at the Anfield side by saying:

“Naturally of course I want to stay here. But to play as a national team player is also an important thing for me because I’m captain. I want to have good results at the Asian Cup, but I know that will mean I have to stay longer in Qatar. But Macca (Alexis Mac Allister) has come back from injury now so I’m confident that Liverpool can do well without me and Mo (Salah).”

Endo confident with his teammates to maintain Liverpool's dominance in his absence.
Endo confident of his teammates to maintain Liverpool’s dominance in his absence.

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The system put in place by Liverpool’s German boss has helped the team navigate through the season despite numerous issues. Despite the ever-changing line-up, they’ve managed to end the year leading the Premier League score board with 45 points to their name. With the return of Alexis Mac Allister and Thiago Alcantara this month, the Reds will have reliable senior players for the midfield.