Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers firmly believes he has finally found a long-term replacement for Jamie Carragher in new defensive recruit Dejan Lovren.

The Reds announced the signing of Croatian international Lovren on Sunday in a deal that reportedly cost the club £20m.

Despite adding three defenders to his squad last summer in Kolo Toure, Mamadou Sakho and youngster Tiago Illori, Liverpool were disappointing in defence last season, finishing with the worst goals against record (50) in the top four.

But Rodgers believes his latest signing can provide the commanding leadership needed to rectify those problems, as their former defensive stalwart Carragher used to do before retiring at the end of the 2012/13 campaign.

"I think he's a really commanding centre-half," Rodgers told the club's official website.

"I've said since we lost Jamie Carragher that we needed that leadership. He's a player that gives is that.

"He's strong, very commanding but he can play. I've been really impressed with him. I watched him at Lyon, he came into the Premier League with Southampton and I know their players thought he was a big driving force for them and kept them defensively solid.

"He had a really good World Cup. I think he's a player that can still improve, still develop as he's in his mid-20's. He's someone I really look forward to working with."

Lovren became the fifth arrival on Merseyside this summer having joined former Southampton teammates Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana at the club, along with Serbian star Lazar Markovic and Emre Can from Bayer Leverkusen.

It had been thought Lovren's arrival could signal the end of Daniel Agger's time at Anfield. The Dane was in and out of the Reds' starting XI last season and has been a summer target of Barcelona for a number of years.

But despite speculation over his future, Agger himself has been keen to look towards the future at the club. "There are some new players who will take over," Agger told Ritzau after being quizzed on the club's transfer activity.

"As soon as big players leave, there will be new ones who will come and some other players will raise their game. Hopefully, there will be more additions who will bring some qualities."