Wataru Endo has suggested goalkeeper Alisson Becker is the player whose ability has impressed him the most since joining Liverpool.
30-year-old Endo signed for Liverpool in a £16m deal from Stuttgart, who he captained in the Bundesliga.
The experienced midfielder was something of a left-field arrival for the Reds this summer, after failed moves for Moises Caicedo and Romeo Lavia in the club’s much-publicised hunt for a defensive midfielder.
Endo has enjoyed limited game time at Liverpool so far, starting just once in the Premier League – in the 2-1 win over Newcastle in August – while he has mostly had to make do with brief cameo appearances from the bench.
Jurgen Klopp, however, has promised that the Japan captain will see more pitch time, stating after the win over West Ham that, “he [Endo] needs to get used to the things here… He will help us a lot, he will play games, he will start games. It’s all good.”
Speaking to Liverpool’s official matchday programme, Endo spoke highly of his new teammates and singled out Alisson for special praise.
“All the players have very high skills here and among them I think the goalkeeper Alisson is great,” he is quoted as saying.
“I have played with a lot of ‘keepers but his ability to stop shots is excellent. Of course, the forward players have very high skills and the other players are very skilful as well, but Alisson’s ability to stop shots is brilliant.
“He saves the team from dangerous situations and he is very powerful.”
© Proshots – Alisson Becker saves Miguel Almiron strike
Endo is only the second Japanese player to represent Liverpool’s men’s team following Takumi Minamino, who made 55 appearances for the Reds between 2020 and 2022.
Liverpool’s new number three also revealed he spoke to his countryman after making the move from Germany.
Endo said: “Yes, I got in touch with him [Minamino]. We spoke on the phone and he congratulated me on joining the club.
“We spoke about what Liverpool is like, and some things like that. He didn’t give me specific advice but said congratulations and that there were some Japanese staff in Liverpool as well.”