Watch Sven Botman’s first interview at NUFC – Talks exciting plans, Toon fans & Virgil van Dijk

In his first interview as a Magpie, Sven Botman revealed how “delighted and thankful” he is to finally sign, also discussing the club’s exciting plans, our “crazy” fans, his biggest strengths as a player and comparisons to Virgil van Dijk.

Last night, the club confirmed that his £35million move from Lille had officially gone through, making him the most expensive defender Newcastle have ever signed.

Despite the hefty fee, the Dutchman is “not thinking too much” about the price and is very much focused “growing with the club”, revealing his excitement at being part of an ambitious project that aims to have us competing “at the top” in the next five years.

For those who don’t know too much about the Ligue 1 winner, the 6ft 5′ defender described himself as “strong in duels” and someone who likes to play out from the back, but admits he still has a long way to go before he should be compared to Dutch idol Virgil van Dijk.

Watch the full interview below, followed by a few quotes we’ve picked out:

Botman on Newcastle’s project:

“Newcastle has this project which is looking really bright for the future. I see myself growing with the club.

“The plan and everything around it was overwhelming for me and super exciting.

“Newcastle wants to reach the top. In the Premier League and, at the end, maybe in Europe.

“In the upcoming five years, it’s looking bright!”

Botman on his strengths:

“I’m a tall guy, strong in duels and I like to play in 1v1s with strikers.

I also like to help build up from the back and, while I’m left-footed, I think I can play with the right too.”

Botman on van Dijk:

“I want to reach van Dijk’s level. He’s a great defender, but I’m far from his level.

Playing in the Premier League I think I can reach it faster and I hope to be like him one day.”

Botman on his first impressions:

“The stadium is very impressive, very big. It’s so high!

They get 52,000 and I heard it’s always sold out.

The fans are crazy and I can’t wait to play here.”

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