Liverpool have completed the £35 million transfer of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain from Arsenal on a five-year deal and hope he will not be their final acquisition ahead of the deadline.
Having agreed a fee with the Gunners on Wednesday for the England international , who rejected Chelsea as he preferred a switch to Anfield, the finer details were completed at St George’s Park on the same night.
The 24-year-old becomes the fifth signing this summer for Jurgen Klopp alongside Mohamed Salah, Dominic Solanke, Andy Robertson and Naby Keita – the latter, however, will only link up with the Reds from RB Leipzig next season.
Oxlade-Chamberlain passed on the opportunity to link up with Premier League champions Chelsea, who reached a pact with Arsenal on Monday, feeling his development would be better served at Liverpool, especially in his favoured midfield role.
Klopp told the club’s official website: “I am really, really happy we have got Alex signed. Since the last game I have been waiting and hoping we could make this transfer – and when I got the news he was ours it was fantastic.
“I remember the first time I saw him play live – it was at Dortmund in 2014 and he came on as a sub that day and made a big impact. He stood out immediately because of his pace and skills and his attitude in such a big game for a young player; I remember him chasing back to make a brilliant challenge on Mkhitaryan in the box to save a certain goal.
“We won that game but lost the return match at Arsenal when he started and played well, I think he hit the post. Since then I have followed him and when I heard it may be possible to sign him I didn’t need to think twice.
“I hear a lot of talk about positions but let’s talk about the player; he is someone with really good abilities who always gives everything for his team. A player that is positive and willing to take risks to try and make positive things happen.
Klopp on AOC: “He has really good abilities, gives everything for his team. He is positive + willing to take risks to make things happen”pic.twitter.com/Y147OTQt23 — Melissa Reddy (@MelissaReddy_) August 31, 2017
“He may still be young but he has a lot of experience in the Premier League, Champions League and for his country. Already he is a very, very good player and I think he has the mentality and desire to get even better – and that excites me.
“This is someone making a tough decision to leave one great club and come to another great club and I think he had many options, so to get him means I am delighted.
“He didn’t make an easy decision but I think he made a great one to go on this journey with this squad of talented boys and our great supporters. I welcome him to the Liverpool family.”
Oxlade-Chamberlain is understood to be on a package of around £120,000 a week – he would’ve earned more had he extended his contract at the Emirates, which had entered its final year, or if he had decided to play for Antonio Conte.
Liverpool are trying to follow Oxlade-Chamberlain’s addition with a blockbuster move for Monaco’s Thomas Lemar , but a fee has yet to be agreed.
The Reds are prepared to make Virgil van Dijk the most expensive defender in the world , but Southampton continue to insist he is not on the market now.