New signing at Brighton Hove Albion of England, Leon Aderemi Balogun has confessed that he is expecting a tougher challenge in the English Premier League next season, because he believes the competition is tougher than the German Bundesliga.
Sequel to his sealed deal with The Seagulls on Tuesday, the former Fortuna Dusseldorf, Darmstadt and SV Mainz of Germany stopper admitted he is in for something steeper, but said he is determined to succeed, because playing in the English Premier League has been his long held dream.
Balogun has become the second Nigeria player to seal a move ahead of the summer market less than a week, after Dutch-born Tyronne Ebuehi swapped ADO Den Haag for Portuguese powerhouse Benfica on Saturday.
Brighton completed the signing of Balolgun on Tuesday as a free agent after his contract with Mainz 05 expired at the end of the recently-concluded Bundesliga season.
The 29-year-old stopper was initially linked with a move to another Premier League outfit, Huddersfield Town earlier this month, but they have been beaten by their rivals, who unveiled the defender immediately he put pen to paper on a two-year deal.
In response, Balogun expressed his admiration for his new club’s recent form in the English Premier League and declared that he is ready for the challenge.
Balogun stated: “I always had a dream to play in the Premier League, and Brighton was one of the first teams to show an interest in me.
“I’ve been following English football as much as I can in Germany, and I saw how they got promoted from the Championship.
“I liked the way they played last season in the Premier League too and how they were able to maintain their status.
“It’s really impressive how they work, not just as individuals, but as a team too. Every footballer wants to compete and I think that’s the biggest challenge.
“I think the Premier League is more competitive. The Bundesliga is probably the most comparable to the Premier League.
“It’s more physical, which I personally like. It’s a bit quicker as well and the individual quality in each team is on another level in comparison to the Bundesliga.
“This is my first club outside of Germany, so there will be a lot of new stuff to adapt to, but I am looking forward to this new experience.”