Dejan Lovren has become the third player to sign for Liverpool from Southampton this summer as Brendan Rodgers’ side have splashed £20 million on the Croatian defender.
The arrival of the centre-back leaves Rodgers with a strong squad of central defenders ahead of next season.
The boss now has several different combinations of players he could choose from with Lovren, Martin Skrtel, Kolo Toure, Daniel Agger and Mamadou Sakho all likely to feature at various points throughout the campaign.
Liverpool were thought to be playing hard ball over the price for Lovren, originally standing firm around the £18 million mark before giving in to Southampton’s top end valuation on the player.
Lovren was one of Southampton’s most consistent players last season, performing especially well against Liverpool at Anfield, netting a goal which helped the Saints secure a famous victory away from home.
“After I played at Anfield last season, I said to myself: "One day I hope I'll be able to play here for Liverpool". The fans will know from the first minute that I'm a player that will give 100 per cent on the pitch,” said Liverpool’s new player.
“I played there last season in front of the crowd singing "You'll Never Walk Alone". That is something very special for every player, every sportsman and every fan. I can't wait to get started.”
It will be fascinating to see which centre-back pairing Liverpool use for the first game of the season, which ironically comes against Southampton.
Martin Skrtel is probably the only certainty to start if fit because he does the basics of defending so well and allows a more gifted possession based defender to play alongside him.
It’s a tough choice because whichever player Rodgers chooses from Lovren, Agger and Sakho, there are plenty of positives and not too many weaknesses.
Here’s what Liverpool fans have made of the signing via Twitter.
LFC (@seanphillips84) July 26, 2014
I'll probably wait until Lovren has played a game for us before I decide whether he was a good signing. Bit of a curveball I know.— Kop 305 (@Kop305) July 27, 2014