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Newcastle in talks to sign Jose Enrique on a free transfer

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Jose Enrique could head the outgoings list at Liverpool this winter, with the Spaniard in talks to re-join former club Newcastle United.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, January 20, 2016: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp shares a laugh with Jose Enrique after the 3-0 victory over Exeter City during the FA Cup 3rd Round Replay match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

UPDATE: Within an hour of these reports emerging, it’s been reported that Enrique has, surprise, surprise, failed to agree terms with his former club.

Original report:

Enrique has struggled to secure game time over the past two years, with the arrival of Jurgen Klopp doing little to improve his chances of a first-team role.

So far this season the left-back has made just three appearances for the Reds, all coming in the FA Cup – two as a makeshift centre-back due to injuries.

His last contribution came in Saturday’s 0-0 fourth-round draw at home to West Ham United, sending a free-kick straight into the wall to kick off a Hammers counter after being brought on in the closing stages.

It may prove a fitting epitaph for the 30-year-old, who has endured a shocking fall from grace on Merseyside, with former club Newcastle preparing a move this deadline day.

According to widespread reports this afternoon, the Magpies are looking to finalise a free-transfer deal before the close of the winter transfer window.

This would see Liverpool settle Enrique’s existing contract, with the former Villarreal defender in the last five months on his £65,000-a-week deal.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, January 30, 2016: Liverpool's Jose Enrique in action against West Ham United during the FA Cup 4th Round match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool certainly won’t stand in his way, with Alberto Moreno, Brad Smith and likely Jon Flanagan ahead of him in the pecking order at left-back.

But with Enrique having rejected a move to West Bromwich Albion in the summer, this may not be a straightforward negotiation.

This came with Enrique exiled from first-team training by Brendan Rodgers.

But having spent the majority of the season playing for Michael Beale’s Under 21s, the hope is that Enrique will now take the hint.

A move to Newcastle would suit Enrique, with Steve McClaren in need of another left-back this month, and returning to familiar surroundings could even reignite his stuttering career.

Stranger things have happened.

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