When Liverpool snapped up Simon Mignolet in the summer it was seen as something of an odd recruitment. The club already had a capable pair of hands in the form of long-term star Pepe Reina. However last season it became evident that Brendan Rodgers wanted to shape his team around a new goalkeeping force - so the Belgian stopper was signed for £9 million from Sunderland, Pepe Reina was loaned to Napoli and the rest, as they say, is history.
Mignolet has been impressive for Liverpool since his summer arrival - perhaps the one blip against Manchester City recently the only smudge on his otherwise blemishless record.
And he has been speaking to SportMagazine about his time at Liverpool so far.
He touched on his decision to join - despite the presence of Pepe Reina and the chances of Liverpool in the open Premier League title race we have coming into this new year.
But he also touched on what it is like to play at Anfield.
Before now, at Sunderland and Sint-Truiden, he would never have played with players the calibre of Liverpool’s best.
Perhaps with the Belgian national team he has had the pleasure of playing with very talented individuals - but when it comes to admitting the best he ever played with - for him it is a no contest…
“There are lots of characters in the team. At first I was nervous, but then I spoke with Gerrard, he talked to me like I was his brother, and he is a great on and off the field... Suarez? When you see what he does in the game - not only match, I confront all day in training - we must recognize that he is a great footballer. A great player who always gives 100% - him and Gerrard are the best I’ve ever played with."
And Liverpool fans will hope they play on the same team for years to come.
image: © Ronnie Macdonald