In fullCody Gakpo's first LFC interview: 'I want to help this team achieve more beautiful moments'
Cody Gakpo outlined his ambition to help this Liverpool side produce 'more beautiful moments' during an exclusive interview with Liverpoolfc.com.
The Netherlands forward agreed personal terms with the club on Wednesday and will officially complete his transfer from PSV Eindhoven at the start of the January transfer window, subject to a work permit.
Gakpo conducted a medical at the AXA Training Centre, where he was welcomed by his new teammates and coaching staff, before sitting down for an in-depth chat about the move.
Watch the interview in full in the LFCTV GO video below, or read on for a transcript…
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Cody, welcome to Liverpool Football Club. How do you feel?
Thank you very much. I feel really good, I'm really excited to be here. I'm looking forward to start training and start playing for this amazing club.
What have the last few days been like for you?
It was really hectic because it went really fast and it was also Christmas. So I have to be with my family and also the deal was done, so I have to fly and everything. But I'm happy that I have a good family around me that I stay calm. That's really nice.
When the news broke on Monday, how crazy did your phone go?
Really crazy. I think everybody I know texted me, so my phone was really, really hot at the time. But I'm really thankful that everybody had some nice words to say, so that's great.
Why is Liverpool the right club for you?
I think this is a great club for me to come in and try to show what I can [do] and try to help the team to achieve more beautiful moments that they already did in the past years. I think for me personally it's also good to develop here and there's a lot of great players here [who] I can learn a lot of things from.
Does the move feel a little bit more 'real' now that you've come to the AXA Training Centre today, had a look around, met some of the guys – does that make it really hit home that you're joining Liverpool?
For sure. When I was at home, it's like you're not really realising where you're going and what's going on. But now I'm here, I'm really realising where I am and what it is going to be for the next years. I'm really looking forward to it.
We saw you bump into someone you know very well in Virgil van Dijk. Did you speak to him about this move and what did he tell you about the club?
At the moment I was calling [in] with the coach, he came into the office of the coach and then he saw me and we chatted a little bit. We spoke a lot over the phone [in] the last days. What he told me was that this is the right move for me to make and for me to develop and to become a better player, that the club is a really big and massive club but also like a real family – I think that's also very important for me because I'm a family guy. He said only good things. I'm also happy that he's here, so he can help me with some stuff. I'm really grateful to be here.
Was Virgil being at Liverpool influential in your decision? Because he's captain of your national team...
Yes, for sure, because he's our captain, he's a great personality, he's a great player. What I said, he can help me a lot with some stuff. But the club itself is also a really big club and [it's a] really nice achievement for me personally that there was interest from the club and, at the end, that I'm here. So, both sides.
What about working with Jürgen Klopp? You met him earlier – how excited are you to begin working with him?
Yeah, really excited. I always saw him on TV and read some news about the style of playing and the person he is. I'm really looking forward to that.
There's obviously a lot of competition for places here at Liverpool, especially in attack. How much are you looking forward to working with your new teammates?
I'm really looking forward to that. What I said before, I can really learn from a lot of players and it's for me just the case that I show who I am and try to do my best to help the team where I can.
What's it going to be like working with someone like Mohamed Salah, for example, who plays a similar position to you but over on the right?
It's really great. He's a fantastic player and I'm really looking forward to learning things from him and to see how he does things so I can also improve my game and that we can win a lot of games together.
Liverpool fans saw your performances at the World Cup for the Netherlands. How would you describe your style of play and how do you see that fitting into this Liverpool team?
When I played at the World Cup, I played more in the centre, so I played like a 'false nine', something like this – try to find my spaces to get the ball and to dribble or to move the ball forward. I try to be a player who goes forward and tries to make dangerous situations for the opponent and create chances, make dribbles and give assists and goals. I hope that I can bring that also to the team. What I said, I have to try to do my best for that and hopefully we can get a lot of beautiful moments.
You haven't had the opportunity to play at Anfield as an opponent. You will play there as a Liverpool player – how much are you looking forward to that?
I'm really looking forward to that. I heard a lot of great stories about the stadium, about the atmosphere. I cannot wait.
What are your ambitions here at Liverpool over this contract that you've agreed?
Obviously to win as many prizes as we can as a team, to perform well, to show the world what we can do as a team and what I can do as a player. And personally, just to keep developing and become a better player every season.
Liverpool fans have already given you a warm welcome on social media – I'm sure you've seen some of it. What would you say to those fans?
I'm really thankful that everybody is giving me such a warm welcome and I'm really looking forward to seeing everybody in the stadium and around the city. So, thanks a lot.