We like how much Jurgen Klopp clearly rates Ragnar Klavan!
Every opportunity our manager gets he raves about the 30-year-old Estonian, who arrived to little fanfare this summer from Augsburg.
Klavan started the League Cup clash on Tuesday and put in a promising performance, scoring his first goal for the club in our 3-0 win.
Klopp was asked about the centre-back during today’s press-conference ahead of the weekend’s clash with Hull City.
“With Ragnar it’s quite simple. I saw him playing for Augsburg. I was surprised they found a player like him and we didn’t before – I wasn’t happy with this!” he began, cited in the Echo.
“But we didn’t need a defender at Dortmund so I didn’t go for him…
“When I came here and came aware of our situation, he was very early in my idea. He is a wonderful football player – with a little issue he is not 21 any more. It was a great opportunity. I did not have to convince him too much.
“I like to work together with players who really want to come. In the beginning a few people were surprised, but there’s not a lot of questions about his quality now!”
For us, Klavan should be backup to Joel Matip and Dejan Lovren this campaign, with Mamadou Sakho eventually pushing for a spot at the heart of defence as well.
Klavan endured a poor afternoon against Burnley, our only Premier League defeat of the season, and hasn’t played in the competition since, while Matip and Lovren are forging a nice partnership.
Thankfully though we have options at the back; none of which fill us with the kind of dread Martin Skrtel did so often over previous seasons…
What’s more, Klavan seems like an experienced, honest pro; who’s going to be great around the training ground and dressing room – and put in decent performances when needed as well. We’re very happy to have him.