'That's pure football' - City new boy excited about Premier League opener at Liverpool
PUBLISHED: 17:17 08 July 2019 | UPDATED: 17:17 08 July 2019
JASON DAWSON ©Jason Dawson
The prospect of performing in front of a global audience in the Premier League played a big part in persuading Ralf Fahrmann to join Norwich City.
The Schalke keeper's season-long loan switch raised eyebrows for those who are aware of the 30-year-old's vast Bundesliga and European experience.
Now Fahrmann will compete with Tim Krul for the starting role in Daniel Farke's team during pre-season, with an exciting first match of the season at Anfield the prize up for grabs.
"If I start thinking about it I get goosebumps. That's pure football, playing against Liverpool, the Champions League winners," the German said. "The euphoria in the stadium will be enormous.
"Over one billion football supporters will watch the match and that's why everyone talks about a huge football spectacle.
"We'll try our best to take them on and we're looking forward to the match."
The Premier League is broadcast to more than 150 countries and has claimed to reach a potential global audience of over four billion people, which is why the new TV rights deal for 2019 to 2022 has risen from £8.5bn to £9.2bn.
That's thanks to a reported 34pc rise in the overseas rights to £4.2bn, mitigating a 7pc drop in domestic rights - emphasising the worldwide appeal of the most watched league on the planet.
"Everyone dreams of playing in the Premier League," Fahrmann continued. "It is the best league in the world and to compete with the best clubs and players is a dream for everyone and therefore, I'm looking forward to next season."
The former Germany U21 international - who has extended his Schalke contract by a year until 2023 - will be competing with a vastly experienced keeper in Holland international Krul.
He has almost 200 Bundesliga and 50 Champions League or Europa League appearances on his CV, however Fahrmann expects his abilities to be thoroughly tested in England's top flight.
Speaking to City's official website, he added: "On the goalkeeper position you need a lot of experience, which I have gathered over the last few years, but the Premier League is something completely different.
"It's a different kind of football and I'm looking forward to this challenge - and trying my best to prepare myself for this every day."
Fahrmann also knows he's joining a tight-knit squad and players who gelled so well during their Championship title triumph last season.
"Norwich is of course a beautiful city, the stadium is always sold out and the club is a family and they stand together," he said.
"Last season there was a big spirit in the team, everybody cared for each other, that's what impressed me the most."