WATN: Josemi

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Continuing our where are they now series, today we look at the life and career of Spanish right back and former Red Josemi.

Rafa Benitez had just arrived at the club and with him came an influx of Spanish players, the likes of Xabi Alonso & Luis Garcia would join that summer but the first player signed by Rafa was Josemi, a right back from Malaga that came in at a cost of £2m.

“I know this player and he is good in defence, good in the air and can make this team stronger.”

Josemi would start the season as the first choice right back ahead of Republic of Ireland international Steve Finnan, his paying style could be described as erratic but loved a tackle. During his time in Spain he picked up an average of one yellow card every three games and he would better this average in England picking up one yellow card in every two games.

Two of those yellow cards were in a win against Fulham and it was after this that Steve Finnan came in to replace the suspended Spaniard and the team never looked back since, with Josemi only picking up the odd sub appearance.

Liverpool of course would go on to win the Champions League at the end of that season and even though Josemi was not involved in the build up it did not stop him celebrating on the pitch like he won the game for them.

Josemi celebrates on pitch champions league final
Liverpool’s Josemi and Luis Garcia (r) celebrate at the final whistle

During the next season and only after making six appearances the Spaniard was sent back to Spain in a swap deal to bring Dutch right back Jan Kromkamp,

He would spent the next eight years bouncing between clubs in Spain & Greece without making much of an impact, the highlight of his career probably came in his last years as in the absence of his ex Liverpool team mate Luis Garcia he captained Indian side Athletico Kalkuta to the Indian Super League in 2014 winning the man of the match award in the process

Josemi captain Athletco de kalkuta
Kerala Blasters FC captain Iain Hume and Atletico de Kolkata captain Jose Miguel Gonzalez Rey look on as Referee Ravshan Irmatov tosses the coin during the final of the Hero Indian Super League between Kerala Blasters FC and Atletico de Kolkata held at the D.Y. Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai, India on the 2oth December 2014. Photo by: Shaun Roy / ISL/ SPORTZPICS

So where is he now ?

Josemi Malaga

After his retirement in 2016 he went back to where it all begin to Malaga to join their back room team as a match delegate, Where he takes care of the referee before and after the game plus and if any players steps out of the way in the pitch it is up to the delegate to ensure he leaves the pitch in a timely manner.