Liverpool star Cody Gakpo admitted the “pressure” associated with the impending title race, especially considering the upcoming crucial match against Newcastle United.
At 24, the Netherlands international recognises the intensity surrounding the game. Despite the mounting pressure as they gear up to host the Magpies at Anfield, Gakpo emphasises that he and his fellow Liverpool players are approaching the situation with focus and determination. They are fully prepared for the challenge ahead.
Ahead of their upcoming match against Newcastle, Gakpo emphasised the unity and camaraderie within the Liverpool team: “I think we are doing really good from the beginning of the season and we have a good group,” he told the official Liverpool website.
“This game, even though we are in first place, we just go into this game like it’s a really important game – like every other game. Of course it brings pressure to be in the top position in the league but I think we don’t see it like that. We are just really focused on that one game we have to play in that moment, and I think that’s also a strength of the team.
“They [Newcastle] have a really good team. Obviously we have to work really hard, we have to fight together, stick together even through the difficult moments maybe that will come in the game – hopefully not but it’s a world-class team as well. It’s hopefully going to be a great game with us on top at the end.”
Gakpo completed his move to Liverpool during the January transfer window for a fee close to £36 million ($46m). As the club approaches the New Year’s Day game, he is nearing his one-year anniversary at Liverpool.
In his relatively brief stint on Merseyside, the adaptable forward has featured in nearly 50 matches for the Reds. He is keen on clinching his first trophy with the club soon. This ambition underscores his determination, especially when discussing the potential title race in 2024.
With the impending absence of star player Mohamed Salah, who will be participating in the Africa Cup of Nations, Gakpo, alongside teammates such as Luis Diaz, Darwin Nunez, and Diogo Jota, will be expected to elevate their performance.
Liverpool’s last match with Salah in the lineup will be against Newcastle. After this, Salah will head to the Ivory Coast to link up with his national team. In the wake of Salah’s departure, Gakpo will gear up for an FA Cup clash against Arsenal followed by a Premier League encounter against Fulham.
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