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Cody Gakpo breaks silence on Tyrone Mings challenge that left Liverpool star ‘in pain’

Cody Gakpo breaks silence on Tyrone Mings challenge that left Liverpool star ‘in pain’

Liverpool’s standout player, Cody Gakpo, has shared his thoughts publicly for the first time after experiencing a forceful challenge from Aston Villa’s Tyrone Mings during their 1-1 match at Anfield on Saturday.

Mings, the center-back for Villa, made contact with Gakpo’s abdomen using a raised boot, resulting in a noticeable mark on the abdomen of the former PSV Eindhoven captain.

Following the incident, Gakpo believed he had scored his seventh goal of the Premier League season. Unfortunately, referee John Brooks, after reviewing the play using the VAR monitor, disallowed the goal.

In contrast to the second-half goal, which found its place in front of the Kop, referee John Brooks did not consult the monitor to review Mings’ reckless tackle on Gakpo. Surprisingly, the English defender was permitted to remain on the field with only a cautionary warning.

“It was a heavy hit but the ref decided to give a yellow card then we have to just carry on,” the 24-year-old told Astro Super Sport. “We just play and accept it.”

“It was painful,” Gakpo added. “I just hope it wasn’t anything serious and that I could play through. I was okay.”

Jurgen Klopp, who was serving a two-match touchline ban (with one match suspended until the end of next season), was seated in the Main Stand during the match against Villa. The German manager was likely dissatisfied with Liverpool’s performance in the first half, as they failed to make an impact against their European rivals.

However, the Reds showed significant improvement in the second half, eventually scoring through Roberto Firmino and increasing the pressure on Aston Villa. Despite their efforts, Liverpool had to settle for a draw.

The Netherlands international said: “In the second half, we sped up the play a little bit and there was more space for me to drop and come in between the lines.

It is worth noting that Gakpo, primarily known for his skills on the wings, has been deployed as a false nine since joining Anfield. He has expressed his liking for this position.

“Then I can really produce something, help the team, I like to play there. I think it’s one of my strengths that I can bring to the team but in the first half, it was a little bit difficult the space was tight.

“But then I or we have to create something to make it more difficult for them but we have to analyse that and do it better next time.”

“The first aim was to adapt to the speed of play, new environment and everything but I really enjoyed it, the fans are amazing and the club is great. I’m looking forward to next season,” Gakpo then reflected on his opening four months on Merseyside.

In his last match at Anfield as a Liverpool player, Roberto Firmino once again demonstrated his value by equalizing Jacob Ramsey’s header. Despite being 31 years old, Firmino has not announced his next career move. However, the Brazilian striker was visibly emotional during his farewell at Anfield. The Liverpool fans in the away section, known as the Kop, serenaded him with his iconic song, marking the second time it happened during the week, with the first instance occurring during the victory over Leicester City.

“I learned a lot from him, I’m still trying to learn a lot from him,” said Gakpo. “There’s still a few tiny thing here [to improve], I think everybody knows what kind of player he [Roberto Firmino] is, he’s a great player and been helpful to me so I can learn a lot from him.”

Cody Gakpo breaks silence on Tyrone Mings challenge that left Liverpool star ‘in pain’

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