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Page last updated at 17:22 GMT, Friday, 21 August 2009 18:22 UK

Liverpool sign defender Kyrgiakos

Sotirios Kyrgiakos
Kyrgiakos played one season at Rangers in 2005/2006

Liverpool have completed the signing of Greek international centre-half Sotirios Kyrgiakos from AEK Athens for a reported £2m.

The former Rangers defender, 30, has agreed a two-year deal with the option of a further year at Anfield.

"He is a player with experience who can hopefully help us in defence," said Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez.

"He's a good player in the air, strong and aggressive. We were looking for a player with experience."

Benitez, whose side beat Stoke 4-0 on Wednesday, added: "We knew the player when he was with Rangers and we've been watching videos of him at Frankfurt and the national team. Our scout department had a lot of information.

"We have talked about the things he has done before and the things he will have to do for us. It was good. He knows what we want and he's ready to work."

Kyrgiakos passed a medical before signing for the Reds ahead of Monday's home Premier League game against Aston Villa.

The Greek player's arrival is a timely one as Liverpool defenders Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel are out with a back problem and a jaw injury respectively.

606: DEBATE
Colonel Red

Kyrgiakos, who has been capped 50 times by Greece, announced the impending deal with Liverpool on his personal website on Tuesday, describing his decision to move to England as "irrevocable".

"This is the biggest challenge of my career. I have accepted Liverpool's proposal," he wrote.

The tough-tackling defender moved back to Greece in 2008 after one season at Rangers and two with Eintracht Frankfurt.

Benitez is hoping his experience can assist the development of the younger defenders in his squad, such as Martin Kelly and Daniel Ayala.

"It will be positive. I was talking with Ayala about this," said Benitez.

"When the young players see someone with experience it is positive because they can learn from them.

"It also means they have more time. If they have to play some games they can but they are not under pressure."



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see also
Liverpool 4-0 Stoke
19 Aug 09 |  Premier League
Gers confirm Kyrgiakos departure
10 May 06 |  Rangers
Kyrgiakos thanks Rangers' faith
19 Sep 05 |  Rangers
Kyrgiakos moves to rejoin Rangers
30 Aug 05 |  Rangers
Kyrgiakos completes Rangers move
20 Jan 05 |  Rangers


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