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Japan FA backs Halilhodzic

AFC World Cup qualifiers

Enrique backs 'brilliant' Carroll

Jose Enrique is backing Liverpool striker Andy Carroll to shine at Anfield this season.

• Carroll ready to deliver
• Blog: Reds start with another draw

Carroll joined Liverpool from Newcastle in January for £35 million but struggled for fitness following the move, and he did not make his debut for the club until March after failing to recover from a thigh injury.

Enrique, who signed for the Reds last week, played alongside the 22-year-old at Newcastle, and is confident that a fit-again Carroll will rediscover his goalscoring form, having netted twice in eight Premier League appearances to date.

"I watched him play last season and I knew he wasn't fit here," Enrique said. "I don't care if the player is Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, if a player is not fit, he is not fit.

"For us in Newcastle he was brilliant and I am sure he will be brilliant for Liverpool. He is a very good player. When a club like Liverpool pays £35 million for Andy I know it is not lucky.

"It is because they think he is a good player. I am sure he is going to do a lot of things very good for us. He is playing very well in his position and he is going to be an important player this season."


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