Liverpool’s promising defender Joe Gomez has signed a new long-term contract with the club, it was confirmed on Friday.
The Reds released the following clip on their official Twitter account, in which the 19-year-old discusses his excitement at committing his future to the Merseyside outfit:
✅ New contract… Signed.@J_Gomez97 commits his long-term future to the club!
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) January 27, 2017
The versatile teenager has forced his way back into contention for a first-team spot this season, having missed much of the previous term with fitness issues.
Gomez was sidelined for 15 months due to injury, although he made his return to the side in last month’s 0-0 draw with Plymouth Argyle at Anfield in the FA Cup.
In a statement on the club’s official website confirming the extension, the teenager said he’s feeling in good shape once again.
“I feel good, very good,” he said. “I’m back training normally and have been for a good while now. Obviously, it was nice to get some minutes in the last two FA Cup games. Now it’s about me trying to push on and keep learning—learning from the team.”
Jack Lusby of This Is Anfield is excited about the player Gomez will blossom into:
— Jack Lusby (@jacklusby_) January 27, 2017
Although Liverpool have yet to add any new faces in the January window, they have been keen to get some stars tied down to long-term deals. Philippe Coutinho signed a fresh extension with the Reds earlier this month.
After joining the Reds from Charlton Athletic in the summer of 2015, Gomez made rapid progress, impressing at left-back under former manager Brendan Rodgers. He made five Premier League appearances before injury struck.
The youngster has worked hard to get back to fitness again under manager Jurgen Klopp. According to Dominic King of the Daily Mail, Gomez is held in high esteem by his club manager and further afield:
Gomez deal now signed. 5 years. A player Jurgen Klopp holds in the highest regard and one for whom The FA have big aspirations.
— Dominic King (@DominicKing_DM) January 27, 2017
Although Gomez was used as a full-back by Rodgers in his debut term, the player is viewed as a centre-back in the long-term.
Indeed, during the appearances against Plymouth this month, Gomez has given an insight into what he can offer. While not the biggest in stature, he’s a tremendous reader of the game, strong in the tackle and composed in his distribution from the base of the XI.
It’s encouraging for Liverpool supporters the club are ready to put full faith in Gomez despite his fitness troubles, and it’ll be fascinating to see how much of a role he plays in Klopp’s side for the remainder of the campaign.
Regardless, the Reds look to have one of England’s most promising young players secured for many years to come.