New Liverpool signing Simon Mignolet has spoken of his joy to be the first player from Belgium to represent Liverpool.

The goalkeeper signed a five-year deal at Anfield yesterday, after impressing for Sunderland during his time with the Black Cats, and told Liverpool's official website of his pride to be the first Belgian to join the club.

He said: “It's quite a surprise to me because you see how many Belgians are playing in the Premier League today.

"It's something to be proud of - the first Belgian to play for a big club such as Liverpool.”

Mignolet’s signing had raised question marks over long-term goalkeeper Pepe Reina’s future with the Reds, but the former Sunderland shot-stopper expects the Spanish international to stay and he will embrace the competition for places.

"I've been in big competitions wherever I've been - in Belgium with the national team and in Sunderland with Craig Gordon and Keiren Westwood, who are international goalies. Now it's the same again with Pepe and with Brad," said the 25-year-old.

"It's only a good thing - to be competitive and to train as hard as you can, it can only bring the best out of you.

"Pepe is an experienced goalkeeper who has proven a lot over the years. I'm looking forward to working with him, the same as I am with Brad [Jones] and the goalie coach.”

Brendan Rodgers will certainly be hoping that Mignolet’s arrival will bring the best out of his ‘keepers. Reina, who had established himself as one of the finest custodians in England, had an error-prone season last campaign and Liverpool will be hoping that his form improves now he knows his position is under threat from another excellent player.


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