Cody Gakpo finally scored his first goal for Liverpool as they defeated Everton in Monday’s Merseyside derby, in what was the Reds’ first win in the Premier League of the calendar year.
Cody Gakpo admitted Liverpool desperately needed to beat Everton after weeks of “struggling” in the Premier League.
Gakpo joined the Reds in the January transfer window, but had failed to score in his opening six games for the club. That drought was finally ended against the Toffees, when he fired in Liverpool’s second goal in their derby day win at Anfield.
The Dutchman ghosted in at the back post to turn Trent Alexander-Arnold’s cross into the net and secure the three points for the hosts. The win was the Reds first of the calendar year and Gakpo has admitted it was one Jurgen Klopp ‘s men desperately needed.
“I think we press good here, Robbo gets the ball, little one-two with Hendo, good switch of play. I have to be at the second post. You have to be ready because you never know, sometimes the defender takes it away, sometimes you miss it, but I have to be there to tap it in,” he told Sky Sports of his goal.
“It’s amazing. I think this was more special than the other few games I’ve played here, and I’m really grateful for all the support in all the games, and this game especially.
“I think it was a great game for our side, we really needed this. We were struggling the last few games and this was a good moment for us to turn this around and I think we did it.”
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Gakpo’s goal came at a crucial time for the attacker, with Diogo Jota, Roberto Firmino and Luis Diaz all returning to fitness. It means that boss Klopp has a major selection headache on his hands, with six quality players battling for just three starting spots.
But Gakpo has welcomed the challenge that those returning men pose and insisted he will work to keep his current starting spot. The Netherlands international also made it clear that his focus is one helping the Reds to win games, rather than on being selected.
I think for every attacking player it’s one point you have to do – score goals – and you have to try to do your best to help the team where you can. Then it’s up to the coach for the choices he makes for the starting 11,” Gakpo added.
And more like a false nine to be involved in the build up, try and be involved in the build up, and from there go forward. It’s another role than I’m used to, but it’s good for me to improve the position and keep working.”