Today Liverpool have announced their first summer signing since becoming Premier League champions. That signing is 24-year-old left back Kostas Tsimikas from Olympiacos for a fee in the region of £11.75 million pounds. The Greek international was reportedly desperate to join Liverpool as it was supposedly his dream move and he will be given the number 21 to go on the back of his shirt.
Being 24 years old Tsimikas will certainly be one for the future and will more than likely be used sporadically in the following campaign rotating with Andy Robertson. Klopp usually likes to integrate new signings in slowly which we have seen a couple of times with the likes of Robertson himself and Fabinho so consequently there will be no pressure for him to perform immediately.
The full-back has been at Olympiacos for the entirety of his senior career with several loan moves in the past five years. The Greek has made 46 appearances all season winning the Greek title for the third time. His last appearance was against Wolves in the Europa League recently. The rumours about him joining had been circulating before that game so fans were able to keep a close eye on him and viewed him carry an attacking threat all game but more impressively he kept Adama Traore quiet all game showing his defensive capabilities.
Olympiacos ran away with their domestic league this season getting 91 points losing one game all season in the league and Tsimikas was a vital component in their side. He contributed hugely going forward with five assists to his name whilst also helping with 16 clean sheets. He played a bit part role in the other two title winning campaigns.
In the Greek Champions European campaign this season they have played in the Champions League and Europa League. Tsimikas played every minute of the Champions League group stage contributing to one clean sheet and one assist but also was up against the world’s elite as he played against Bayern Munich and Tottenham Hotspur which means he has some invaluable experience in the greatest club competition in the world already.
In the Europa League Tsimikas has played 98% of minutes whilst knocking out Premier League opposition Arsenal who are meant to be one of the ‘big six’ and he performed well in both legs showing he can handle the challenge of a big game as an underdog.
One of the main reasons Klopp made signing another left back a priority is because Robertson’s back up for the previous two years has been James Milner. An unnatural full back whose weaker foot was his left meant a lot of the time Milner would have to cut in to cross the ball in rather than using his left foot. As incredible as Milner has been in any position over the past five years it is worth remembering he is now 34 plus at times the fluidity of attacks can be dented without a natural left foot down the left which means It is a smart signing as these little things can bring an edge especially when rotating the squad especially in a excruciating title race which is what Liverpool are expected to be in.
Liverpool coaching staff had reportedly viewed him as a potential signing three years ago whilst the Greek was on loan in Holland playing for Willem II. The reason coaching staff were looking at that side was because at the time Pedro Chirivella was on loan there from Liverpool so supporters partially have the Spaniard to thank.
In an exclusive interview he gave to Liverpool whilst unveiling the signing he expressed his delight and also admitted something. He said that ‘as a kid, I supported LiverpoolHe said that ‘as a kid, I supported Liverpool’ and also said that ‘my brother is a Liverpool fan and he pushed me to come her and sign.’ He will have made a good impression already with fans who are unfamiliar with him as he said ‘I’m very proud to be here. For me, the biggest club in the world.’ Not the worst thing to say about your new club.
So, the full-back has shown plenty of times that he is Premier League and Champions League ready so there should not be a problem with getting used to the standard that is expected.. He has the potential to have massively successful Liverpool career being at the age of just 24.. It is a piece of business who many may debate but it may turn into a piece of amazing business as Michael Edwards has proven time and time again he can find hidden gems and this may yet again be another one. Come to think of it, who was the last young full-back Liverpool signed on the cheap?
Written by Elliot Thompson