MADRID, SPAIN - DECEMBER 20: Nuri Sahin (R) of Real Madrid celebrates with team mate Jose Callejon after scoring Real's second goal during the round of last 16 Copa del Rey second leg match between Real Madrid and Ponferradina at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on December 20, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)
A day after it became common knowledge that Turkish-German midfielder Nuri Sahin was heading to Liverpool on loan for the 2012-13 season, with manager Brendan Rodgers and others at the club openly talking about his impending arrival, late on Saturday night the club made it official: Sahin has signed from Madrid, he's coming for the year, and there is no option for Liverpool to buy the player next summer.
In order to secure his transfer ahead of Arsenal, Liverpool had to accept a loan deal without a purchase option while committing to pay a larger share of his wages for the coming year, as just over £4M will be sent to Madrid to offset roughly two-thirds of his £120k weekly salary1. And as a result, for the first time in a long time, Liverpool appears to have both quality and depth in the middle of the park—even if only for a year—with Sahin joining Lucas, Joe Allen, Steven Gerrard, Jordan Henderson, and Jonjo Shelvey in a group that suddenly appears capable of playing in multiple competitions and standing up to the inevitable injuries that come with a long season.
Along with official confirmation of the player's signing, it was also revealed that Sahin will wear the number four for Liverpool, that as rumoured Xabi Alonso helped push the young midfielder towards the club, and that as a member of Turkey's U17 European Championship winning side in 2005 Sahin and his teammates watched Liverpool win the Champions League in Istanbul.
Which is all well and good, but as no new signing can be considered completely official without a compilation video unfamiliar fans can use to build up unattainable expectations for the player from, we'll leave you with a brief glimpse of one of Sahin's rare appearances for Madrid from when they faced Sporting Gijon last spring.
1Some outlets (and Arsenal fans) have noted that, depending on the report, Liverpool is set to either pay £4M to subsidise Sahin's salary or £80k per week. Some have then gone on to add these two numbers together, essentially doubling Liverpool's outlay to £8M—or more than €10M—in total for Sahin's services. Given that the differing numbers represent two ways of reporting the same fee rather than two seperate fees Liverpool will have to pay, they should not be added together in such a manner (even by Arsenal fans upset at missing out on Sahin).