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Skrtel signs new deal

Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel has signed a new long-term contract at Anfield after a summer of speculation about his future.

Last month, Skrtel, 27, admitted receiving offers to move to other clubs and said: "Anything can happen."

The Slovakia international - who won the Player of the Year award as Liverpool finished in a disappointing eighth position last season - was reported to have been frustrated by the club's failure to challenge for the Premier League title.

Speculation suggested that champions Manchester City were interested in signing Skrtel although his agent, Karol Csonto, had previously insisted his client was staying at Anfield.

Speaking to the Slovakian newspaper Dennik Sport, Skrtel - who joined Liverpool from Zenit St Petersburg for £6 million in 2008 - said: "I am Liverpool player because I have a valid contract here.

"At the moment I am a Liverpool player, and what happens in future in football you can never foresee. Anything can happen, but for now I have a valid contract and what is to come will come."

He finally put an end to the rumours on Monday when committing to a new deal with the Reds.

He told Liverpool's official website: "I'm happy because I am a part of one of the biggest clubs in the world. After last season there was a lot of talk about my future - but I have to say that the first priority for me was always to sign a new deal with Liverpool.

"For me it's a great thing to play for Liverpool. I am proud to play for Liverpool with these great players - probably some of the best players in the world.

"I hope I can create history at this club and that the fans will always remember me. That's my target for the future."

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