Soccer

Kostas Tsimikas makes Liverpool admission after completing £11.75m Reds transfer

Kostas Tsmikas is not shy in admitting he simply didn’t believe it when told Liverpool wanted to sign him.

This was the current champions of England, Europe and the world knocking on the door of Olympiakos, asking about a player with only one full season’s experience in the relative backwaters of the Greek Super League.

This was a player who had previously been on loan at Denmark’s Esbjerg, and Willem II in Holland. No wonder he was perplexed.

“From the start I didn't believe it but after I was very happy to come here and play for this team,” he said.

Yet after the initial shock, Tsimikas, who has three caps for his country Greece, set about evaluating the task he faces at Anfield – somehow supplanting quite probably the best left-back in world football right now.

It is a daunting task, yet the 24-year-old is not shy of the competition. The defender believes he can challenge Robertson – by learning from him.

“He's one of the very good talents. I know Robertson is one of the best left-backs in the world but this gives me extra motivation to work hard,” he said.

“For me, I will give my best to play. I watched the Premier League on TV when I was a kid, and it was always one dream I had to come to play in this league and to come through.

“I believe I can. With a lot of work and focus on what I do and what the coach wants, and every day working hard in training, I can be on the highest level.

“I’m ready to play for this jersey.”

That is the kind of fighting talk Klopp likes to hear. He hasn’t signed a back up for Robertson who will simply sit on the sidelines taking a fat pay check.

He wants someone who will fight to play – either at left-back or in different positions.

And Liverpool’s analysis has suggested he has the running power, and delivery, to possibly play further forward on the left, wide of a midfield three or even further up. But that is in the future.

For now, he simply wants to learn from the world-class talent around him… and from the world-class coach who has signed him.

“I’m very excited because for me, Jurgen Klopp is one of the best coaches in the world. I am very excited that he would choose me to be one of the left-backs of the team.”

And his ambition? “To achieve [our] goals. To win the league again and also to win the Champions League. I give everything in every minute for this team.”

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