By Editor Wayne Veysey| Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this
Follow me on Twitter @footyinsider247
Simon Mignolet has signed a new Liverpool contract worth £22.8million, Football Insider sources understand.
The Merseysiders announced on Monday afternoon that the goalkeeper has finalised a long-term agreement with the club he joined in the summer of 2013.
Football Insider revealed last month that Mignolet was ready to commit to a new agreement that lifted his salary from £60,000-a-week to £80,000-a-week.
His new deal will run for five-and-a-half years until 2021 and replaces his current contract, which was due to expire in 2018.
Mignolet, 27, has attracted criticism for several errors this season but Jurgen Klopp has consistently backed the Belgium international and insisted he has no plans to move for a new No1 in the winter window.
“I’m very pleased that I can be at Anfield and a part of Liverpool for a long future. I’m happy to commit my future to LFC,” Mignolet told the Liverpool website upon signing the contract.
“I know signing a new contract comes with new responsibility. I’m getting older as well and coming into the years where people would say those are the years a ‘keeper is at his best.
“I know with a long-term contract, you get more responsibility – and I want to take up that role because I’m the sort of character that wants to be a leader, wants to speak in the dressing room and wants to help the defence.
“I’ll try to work hard together with the goalkeeping coach and staff here, who are behind me and have given their confidence with a new contract.
“I would like to thank them for that – but you can’t really do that with words, you have to do that with performances on the pitch. And that’s what I’ll try to show.”
Adam Bogdan has deputised for Mignolet on a few occasions but the former Bolton has made some glaring mistakes, most notably in the 2-2 draw at Exeter last Saturday and in the 3-0 defeat at Watford before Christmas.
Klopp took the surprise step of recalling youngster Danny Ward from his season-long loan at Aberdeen earlier this month.
The Liverpool manager has distanced himself from links with the likes of Stoke’s Jack Butland and AC Milan’s Diego Lopez while describing Mignolet as one of the smartest goalkeepers he has worked with.
The Belgian signed a five-year contract when he arrived from Sunderland for £9million in 2013.