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Monday 27 August 2012

Sahin attracted by Rodgers' philosophy

Real Madrid player joins Liverpool on loan after heartening talk with new manager

Nuri Sahin has been capped 31 times for Turkey at the age of 23

Nuri Sahin says he is looking forward to playing alongside Steven Gerrard after becoming Liverpool’s fourth signing of the summer at the weekend.

The 23-year-old Real Madrid midfielder joined on a season-long loan deal on Saturday after being lured away from Real Madrid by the footballing philosophy of manager Brendan Rodgers. 

"I am happy to be here and I am looking forward to playing for Liverpool," Sahin told the club's website. "It makes me proud to have joined such a big club like Liverpool.

"After the first conversation we had, I was left impressed by Brendan Rodgers. He told me about how he wants to play football and what the goals are he wants to reach with Liverpool. I am looking forward to meeting the fans. I hope it will be a nice year with trophies."

"Steven Gerrard is a huge name, not only in Liverpool but in world football"
Nuri Sahin

Sahin, who started his career at Borussia Dortmund and has been capped 31 times by Turkey, added that he was also swayed towards a move to Anfield by Real team-mate and former Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso.

"When [Alonso] heard Liverpool were interested in me, he started telling me about Liverpool," added Liverpool‘s new No 4, who is the fourth summer by Rodgers after Fabio Borini, Joe Allen and Oussama Assaidi.

"He is still in love with Liverpool, I think. He was saying, 'Go there, you will love it - the fans will take care of you and love you,' and things like that. He said Anfield is the best stadium in the world. Xabi won a lot of trophies here, and hopefully we can do that too."

Sahin is particularly looking forward to lining up alongside the club captain.

"Steven Gerrard is a huge name, not only in Liverpool but in world football," he continued. "I am looking forward to playing with him."

Sahin’s admiration for Gerrard will stand him in good stead, according to Spanish football journalist Graham Hunter, who believes the young Turk can dovetail well with the England captain in the Reds midfield.

"Sahin has quick feet, is a rapid decision-maker and used the ball well"
Graham Hunter

"What stands out about him is that he has quick feet, he is a rapid decision-maker and he used the ball well, short and long," Hunter told premierleague.com. "He’s a tempo-changer, a dead-ball taker and at Liverpool he could really thrive alongside Gerrard, learning off him."

Sahin only made two league appearances after joining the Spanish giants last summer.

"If you look at Sahin’s numbers from last season he looks like a dud but he was not fit when he first arrived at Madrid," added Hunter. "It took him until January or February to capture full fitness.

"There’s no reserve football in Spanish football so he was training his way to fitness so he was never right. But this pre-season he’s been sharp and even though he has been played out of position at left-back he has been a real hit."

Liverpool will be hoping he hits the ground running in time for the visit of Arsenal on Sunday.

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Key Points

  • Nuri Sahin joins Liverpool on season-long loan from Real Madrid
  • Turkey midfielder looking forward to playing with Steven Gerrard
  • Spanish football expert Graham Hunter says player has a lot of talent
Tags: Liverpool