Following Philippe Coutinho’s new contract, Liverpool have extended the contract of the talented Joe Gomez. The 19-year-old defender is playing again after 15 months out after a serious injury and setbacks in his recovery. The new deal was described as a “long-term contract” and will come into effect from July 2017.
“It was a very easy decision,” the youngster told the official site just after extending terms. “It is a great club and when it was mentioned about me extending my time here, it’s not something I had to think very long about. I’m very happy it’s done now and I’ll just look to push on.
“It’s massive. It means a lot to me – it’s a massive gesture from the club to show that trust and faith in me. That’s why it was so important I did the same and done it so quickly, because I’m very happy here. I’ve loved living here and playing here and learning under the new manager, so it was a quick decision.”
Gomez is seen as the future of Liverpool’s defence with only Joël Matip a convincing first-team player at centre back. Dejan Lovren remains unconvincing despite playing well when Matip is alongside him, Ragnar Klavan is a backup option, and Lucas Leiva is a converted squad option. Jürgen Klopp expressed his excitement about Gomez’s “"incredible potential” and the ability to give “the precious commodity of time” to a young player who undoubtedly deserves it.
"We will invest our time into him and allow him the space to develop and become the player we know he can be,” Klopp enthused. “Today's contract announcement only strengthens this resolve. He will have a big role to play in our future, but he's also important for our present.
"He has all the attributes you need to succeed at the very highest level in his position. That is on the physical and the mental side, he has it all. But I think it's his hunger and willingness to learn that will serve him best in his career."
Gomez has made two appearances so far this season and is set to start in the FA Cup Fourth Round tie against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Anfield tomorrow. What Liverpool need in the years ahead is a reliable partner for Matip, and with Lovren viewed as a first-team player, Joe Gomez could very well be that man in the years ahead.