56 interceptions, 80 clearances: German stopper perfect for Liverpool

Schalke 04

Liverpool should look to former target Benedikt Howedes to shore up defensive concerns.

Liverpool and Stoke produced a game yesterday that really did live up to the billing of 'super Sunday' and despite winning, the three goals that Stoke managed to score will leave concerns with Brendan Rodgers.

The Reds have had absolutely no issues scoring goals this season and comfortably sit the second highest scorers in the league, eight goals behind City who are first but 11 in front of Chelsea in third.

There have to be concerns about Liverpool's defensive efforts, having conceded the most goals out of the genuine top 4 contenders and the 12th most in the Premier League - and recently having lost Daniel Agger to injury.

Their in ability to stop other teams having chances reflects in their goals conceded tally, conceding on average 13.1 shots a game, the 10th worst in the Premier League.

So, how can Liverpool bring their mediocre defensive unit up to scratch with their attacking threat?

Well, I would back German International and former Liverpool target Benedikt Howedes to provide a huge improvement to their side and enhance their chances of a top 4 finish.

The 25-year-old is set to play a major part in Germany's World Cup campaign in the summer, despite competition from some of the World's top defenders.

He is enjoying another season as Schalke's main man at the back, producing the numbers that make him one of the division's top defenders.

In Bundesliga and European competitions this season, he has made:

20 Appearances
1 Goal
1 Assist

33 Tackles
56 Interceptions
14 Offsides Won
80 Clearances
12 Blocked Shot

976 passes with a 87.8% pass accuracy
82 accurate long balls from 130 attempted.

Along with his impressive and clearly organised defending style, the 18-capped German international has also got an impressive passing accuracy, which would fit in perfectly with Brendan Rodgers's style of play and allow Liverpool to build from the back.

Howedes is currently injured with a slight hamstring injury, but he has tweeted that he close to returning to full first-team training, which would mean Liverpool would be wise to pursue a deal as soon as possible.

image: © achimh

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