sport

Rodgers pleased with Enrique

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has hailed the versatile Jose Enrique for his recent performances.

The Spaniard, who usually operates at left-back, was told to step up his game in the opening weeks of the season or face the possibility of leaving the club in January.

Enrique has since risen to the challenge and has been impressive in a wide role on the left side of midfield, starting the Reds' last seven Premier League matches.

Rodgers is pleased with how the 26-year-old has responded to the challenge and believes that playing him further upfield was helpful.

"That was always the idea," Rodgers told the Liverpool Echo about playing Enrique in left midfield.

"I felt that he was someone with tremendous ability, but I think its massive credit to him how he has taken on board the chats that we've had and the messages we've given him.

"He has listened and taken it on board, and that's to his enormous credit.

"I think the spell on the left side has made him feel that he can actually get into the box and be a threat in that way. Because when I came here, I wanted my full-backs to do that, to get up there and join in up there. That's vital.

"Jose never really did that at first, to be honest, but now you see he's had that spell on the side. I thought he was sensational [in a 1-0 win against Southampton at home on Saturday].

"He looks more aggressive, and it's fantastic for him. He will be very important in our way of working in the future."