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Enrique Ponders Life, The Universe, Champions League, and Benteke

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In an expansive interview with Marca, Jose Enrique discussed his thoughts on possible Champions League qualification, our newest Big Name (or possibly just Big Money) transfer, and the recent departures of Suarez and Gerrard.

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Although Jose Enrique's claims of "Alienation" grabbed the headlines yesterday, he had a great deal more to say about being Liverpool over the past several seasons.

For one, Enrique thinks a Top 4 spot is theirs to lose:

"This season we have no excuse not to enter the top four. We have spent a lot of money to bring good players and I think [Rodgers] has made a great squad. We have many alternatives.

"Can we win the league? In football, you never know. We must try to fight for everything."

Presumably Enrique still considers himself one of the "Many alternatives," and time will only tell if he's correct in that assessment.

The Spanish left back was also confident about Benteke's future in red:

"I've always liked him. To score 31 goals in a season without taking penalties like Suarez did isn't easy, but Benteke is the best striker we could have signed in the Premier League.

"He is like a bull, he can play with both feet, and he will complement Sturridge - they can form one of the best strikeforces in the league."

That's very high praise from a defender who has faced off against the big Belgian before.

Speaking of Luis Suarez, Enrique thought both he and Steven Gerrard are sorely missed at the club and impossible to replace, "If Gerrard was God in Liverpool, Luis was almost God. Suarez is irreplaceable. I shared a dressing room with Riquelme, Forlán ... but none as good as him."

Well, I know Jose is besties with Elizabeth, but at TLO Fowler is God, just to set the record straight.

And because Enrique never shies away from controversy or anything else, of course he had something to say about the inevitable Sterling/Ibe comparisons that have popped up since the former's departure.

"If Liverpool look after [Ibe], then he can become another player worth 69million euros," he said.

"He is super quiet, very much like Raheem was, but you can tell he has more.

"He has been our best player in pre-season. He is strong, he can drive forward and hits the ball with both feet. He is top, top top."

Top, top, top? Clearly this is a player trying to get back on Rodgers' good side.