One of the many new recruits at Liverpool, Lazar Markovic, believes that his new side can challenge for the Premier League title this season after missing out so agonisingly last year.
Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, the 20-year-old who joined the Reds for a deal in excess of £20m lifted three league titles in Serbia with Partizan Belgrade and one in Portugal with Benfica.
While his new club may have taken Manchester City all the way to the wire last season, slipping away after an infamous home defeat to Chelsea, Markovic is confident that Liverpool can adapt to life without Luis Suarez.
When quizzed on his chances of lifting a fifth league title in England, he replied: "Of course."
"Firstly, it is one of the best clubs in the world. Secondly, it is one of the best leagues in the world and, thirdly, Liverpool are superior and the strongest team, in my opinion, in England."
The prospect of playing alongside Mario Balotelli, the enigmatic Italian who looks set to complete a £16m transfer to Anfield on Monday, is another reason for Markovic to be optimistic.
"I am excited – I love good players and want to play with good players," he says. "We are all competent and good enough to win the title. It’s the confidence that I feel."
While a hamstring injury may have limited his ability to showcase his skills so far, playing just 45 minutes against Olympiakos in the pre-season tour to the United States, the Serbian is finally ready to be unleashed on the Premier League.
"I watched Liverpool – I watched every one of their games last season because I love the Premier League," Markovic adds.
"Their style of football is one of the main reasons why I came here. Last season, only bad luck played a part in the outcome: Liverpool were the best team."
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