Liverpool forward Cody Gakpo believes his battle with Darwin Nunez to lead Liverpool’s front line is “like a competition.”
And the Dutchman insists they both have to work hard to be the “best player for the team.”
So far this season, the pair have effectively shared minutes. Gakpo has been used in more secondary competitions and is therefore expected to start this evening as he goes in search of his first Europa League goal of the campaign.
With his ability to drop in and look competent on the ball in and around the midfield, it is no wonder the Dutchman has been utilised by manager Jurgen Klopp slightly further back on the pitch, behind Nunez.
Speaking ahead of tonight’s Group E game against LASK at Anfield. He said: “Obviously I’ve played in a few different positions, striker, midfield and on the left wing.
“I can do better. You want to improve every day, you want to become a better player all the time. Last season I played almost every game as a striker. This season, as a striker or as a midfielder.
“I just focus on them two positions and just show what I can do and try to be the best player I can be.”
The 24-year-old touched on the battle he has with fellow striker Nunez for the number nine role.
The Uruguayan has 13 goal contributions this season, and is seemingly the first choice up top, so it has been up to Gakpo to try and prove his worth in the Liverpool side.
On Nunez, he said: “He’s doing great. It’s like a competition but we both have to keep working hard and being the best player we can be to help the team.”
The summer signing of midfielder Ryan Gravenberch made him the third Dutch player at the club alongside captain Virgil Van Dijk and Gakpo, and he is grateful his fellow countrymen are alongside him.
Gakpo said: “It’s nice to have them here, we can speak Dutch so we get to know each other better and better.
“But it’s not like we are a group within the group. We work better together maybe because we speak the same language but we try to work and do everything speaking in English.”
Liverpool find themselves third in the Premier League table and nine points better off than they were at this stage last season and Reds supporters may be starting to feel as though there is more silverware on the horizon.
Gakpo said: “We are in a different situation than we were last year. What we want to achieve this season is to win trophies together and I think we are on the right track.
“Last season at the end we also had a good run and everybody said to each other that we have to continue that run and take it to the new season and I think that’s what we did. We started this season really well and it’s on us to now to keep going.”
Liverpool’s fifth game of Group E kicks off at 8pm (Thursday November 30).