As Daniel Agger dealt comfortably with Tottenham’s potent attacking force on Monday night, it was hard to believe that it was only the Dane’s 100th start in a Liverpool shirt.
Since arriving from Brondby in a £6m deal in 2006, Daniel Agger has established himself as one of the Premier League’s best defenders. Whether he has played alongside Sami Hyypia, Jamie Carragher or Martin Skrtel, the 6’3″ centre back has consistently put in performances of the highest level.
In his first full season at the club, Agger also showed his knack for scoring both important and spectacular goals. With the 2006-07 season still in its infancy, Agger unleashed a piledriver from 30 yards which swerved past Shaka Hislop and nestled into the net in front of the Kop. As if this wasn’t enough, Agger scored a crucial goal in the Champions League Semi-Final Second Leg, which went a long way to securing the Reds’ place in their second Champions League Final in three years.
While not being a regular goalscorer, Daniel Agger is often praised for his composure and passing, leading many to suggest that he could also play as a central midfielder. Neither of Liverpool’s other central defenders are as comfortable on the ball, which means that the Reds struggle to break teams down without Agger in the side.
One of the main reasons for Liverpool’s superb defensive record this season is the fact the Agger has managed to stay clear of injury. Throughout his six years on Merseyside, the self-professed tattoo artist has suffered terribly with a series of rib, back and knee problems. Without such unfortunate luck with injuries, Agger would certainly have surpassed 100 starts for Liverpool long before the clash with Tottenham.
Indeed, he has already made more league starts for the club this season (20) than he did in the entirety of 2011-12 (16). His partnership with a vastly improved Martin Skrtel has seen Liverpool’s watertight defence leak just 21 goals. Agger’s calm, assured displays complement the more aggressive stance of Martin Skrtel superbly, with many suggesting that they could develop into a partnership on par with previous Liverpool greats such as Lawrenson & Hansen and Carragher & Hyypia.
The ability is there for all to see. All he has to do now is stay clear of injury.