Liverpool defender Kostas Tsimikas has spoken about his aim of replacing Andy Robertson in Jurgen Klopp’s first team.
The left-back came through Olympiacos’ academy in his native Greece, before making 86 appearances in their senior side. He also had loan spells in Denmark and the Netherlands.
Tsimikas enjoyed a great campaign with Olympiacos in 2019-20, featuring in 46 games across all competitions. He helped the Greek outfit to win their first league title in four years.
Tsimikas also gained experience in both the Champions League and Europa League that season.
The 25-year-old’s impressive displays saw Liverpool arrive on the scene for his signature. They struck an £11.75million deal with Olympiacos to land him in August 2020.
Tsimikas’ first campaign at Anfield was blighted by coronavirus, thigh problems and a knee injury. He would only make two Premier League outings for the Reds.
However, the 16-cap Greek international is now fully fit and making an impact under Klopp. He is already on 18 appearances for the season, and has registered three assists in that time.
Kostas Tsimikas targets team-mate’s place
Tsimikas is rivalling fellow left-back Robertson for a starting spot. However, he faces a tough task to force his way into Klopp’s team as Robertson has been one of the worlds most effective full-backs in recent years.
Tsimikas started in the recent 3-1 win over Norwich and set up Sadio Mane for the attacker’s acrobatic goal.
During an interview for the matchday programme, Tsimikas said (via the Liverpool Echo): “I enjoy life in England and I enjoy life as a Liverpool player a lot. Obviously the first year was not as I hoped and was the most difficult year of my career so far in football.
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“Now the second year is going good and I have improved a lot as a player and as a person, I think. I have learned a lot. I have learned to work harder and obviously in the positions here you have the best in the world.”
Kostas Tsimikas added: “For me, I have to challenge Robbo and to trying to catch the best gives me an extra boost to be the best. The most important thing is to work hard if you want to achieve your goals.
“I think I have done that all the time I was here and I will do it for the rest of my Liverpool career.”
‘Luxury’ Liverpool man becomes transfer target
Meanwhile, Liverpool striker Divock Origi is a summer target for Serie A duo Napoli and Atalanta amid his current struggles, according to reports.
Klopp then insisted in January that Liverpool will keep him until the end of the season. There is a performance option in his contract, whereby a specific number of Premier League starts will trigger a one-year extension.
However, he has yet to start in the top-flight this term. As a result, Inter have been offered the chance to sign Origi.
According to Tuttomercatoweb, though, Napoli and Atalanta are now further Serie A suitors for the 26-year-old.
Indeed, the report claims that Origi is one of the ‘luxury’ players on the market because of his contract situation and age.
Napoli have made contact with Origi and his agents in recent weeks over his availability. The Italian club are thinking of signing the Reds star as a potential replacement for Victor Osimhen.