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Thursday 2 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Sepp van den Berg (file pic).
# New Face
Van den Berg: I thought Liverpool talk was a joke
The 17-year-old Dutch defender has completed a move to Anfield.

SEPP VAN DEN Berg admits that he considered talk of interest from Liverpool to be “a joke” before seeing a £1.3 million move to Anfield wrapped up.

The 17-year-old Dutch defender has become the latest addition to Jurgen Klopp’s ranks on Merseyside.

A player of immense potential, he has been acquired with one eye on the future.

Van den Berg is looking forward to taking on that challenge with the Reds, with the last few weeks having been something of a dream for the highly-rated youngster.

Quizzed by Liverpool’s official website on what a move to the current holders of the Champions League crown means, he said: “Can I put it into words? It’s just amazing. It is, for me, the biggest club in the world and it’s a dream come true. I am really excited.”

He added on the transfer talk which built quickly to this point: “I couldn’t believe it, I thought it was a joke.

I was really happy and, to be honest, I was a little bit scared at first, because such a big club had interest in me. So, I was a little bit scared but eventually I was really excited.”

Van den Berg believes that he boasts the qualities to be a success at a Premier League giant.

He said of his attributes: “I am a centre-half, I am calm with the ball, I am quite quick and can run, but I came here especially to improve myself more.

I think this is the best place for me to grow and hopefully play a lot of games here.”

There will be plenty of familiar faces at Anfield to help Van den Berg settle.

Netherlands internationals Georginio Wijnaldum and Virgil van Dijk are established members of the fold, with the latter having helped to convince a new arrival that Liverpool is the best place for him.

“I was thinking about [the idea of] training with Virgil. For me, he is the best defender in the world right now, so I can learn a lot from him,” said Van den Berg.

Van Dijk is already well on his way to becoming an all-time great at Liverpool, and that is a standing that Van den Berg intends to enjoy at some point further down the line.

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He said of his ambitions in England: “Longer term, I hope I can play as much as possible here for the club.

“Short term, [my target is] to be with the first team, develop myself, grow into the team and see how it goes.

“Long term, I really want to be a legend here.”

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