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Who is new Liverpool signing Wataru Endo?

Who is new Liverpool signing Wataru Endo?
Image credits: Wataru Endo / Bundesliga

Wataru Endo is poised to complete a transfer away from Stuttgart, with him set to switch south Germany for Merseyside by joining Liverpool.

Fabrizio Romano revealed the surprising news of Endo's 'dream move' to Liverpool on Wednesday, with him set to join Jurgen Klopp's side for a reported €18 million.

Personal terms were immediately agreed, with the Japanese midfielder being allowed to leave and follow his dream, with it being dubbed as 'the biggest opportunity of his career'.

He has now completed his medicals, and is set to sign the contract, after which the deal will become official.

The surprising move came after deals for Romeo Lavia and Moises Caicedo fell through, with Liverpool being pipped to their signings by Premier League rivals Chelsea.

Endo is definitely a cheaper option than the two youngsters, but he will without a doubt bring plenty of qualities to Klopp's midfield.

At 30 years old, he will most likely not have the longevity of the other two, but when placed next to them, stats (according to Squawka) make for some interesting reading.

While naturally a defensive midfielder, Endo was very good going forward in the Bundesliga last season, scoring five goals and creating 46 chances, compared to Lavia's one goal and 16 chances, and Caicedo's 1 goal and 43 chances in the Premier League.

However, this also hints at his risk-taking nature, with him losing possession 434 times all season, much higher than Lavia's 209 and Caicedo's 345. He does work to regain the ball back though, recovering possession 231 times, more than Lavia's 187 and just minimally lower than Caicedo's 248.

While Caicedo is superior to both of them when it comes to passing, registering a remarkable 88.8% pass accuracy, Endo still managed a respectable 79.7%, while Lavia got an 86.4% success rate.

Defensively, he made 70 tackles in the league, while Lavia managed 60 and Caicedo got a sensational 100. Endo's take-on success rate came in at 62%, higher than Caicedo's 59.2%, but lower than Lavia's 69.8%.

In terms of clearances, he got 60 throughout the season, while Lavia and Caicedo got 23 and 25, respectively. Caicedo ranks supreme in interceptions with 56 (Endo: 26, Lavia: 33).

It is important to note that Stuttgart finished in 16th last season, and despite their measly position, they only conceded 57 goals in 34 games, the lowest out of the bottom six.

Endo might not be the flashiest of signings, and his qualities are arguably limited when compared to the two younger options, but he has what it takes to be a brilliant player under Klopp, especially considering he can also play at centre-back if needed. Another huge factor is that he is significantly cheaper than both Lavia and Caicedo, primarily because he is being bought from the Bundesliga. Had he played in the Premier League, he'd probably cost €20 million more than he is currently valued at.

At the same time, the decision to sell Fabinho, who turns 30 in October, to replace him with someone his age, definitely seems strange.

It remains to be seen how Endo will fit in at Liverpool, but as evidenced in the 1-1 draw against Chelsea, Klopp badly needed a defensive midfielder, and he has seemingly got one.


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