Aspas thrilled to open Reds account
10:57am Monday 6th January 2014 in © Press Association 2014
Liverpool forward Iago Aspas admits his maiden goal for the club has helped ease the frustration of his first six months in English football.
The 26-year-old arrived at Anfield on the back of scoring 12 times in 34 matches in his final season for Celta Vigo but has found opportunities limited and has struggled to adapt.
However, with Luis Suarez rested for the FA Cup third-round tie at home to Oldham, Aspas was given a start in his preferred role up front and he rewarded manager Brendan Rodgers with a well-taken second-half strike which was supplemented by James Tarkowski's late own goal in a 2-0 win.
"It's wonderful for me to score my first goal here," the Spaniard told liverpoolfc.com.
"It's difficult when you don't play all the games, but I'm very happy to have scored.
"I played the last game on the right wing and (against Oldham) I played as a striker, which is my position."
The victory was not entirely straightforward as the League One side put up a good fight and Liverpool finished the match with 10 men as centre-back Daniel Agger went off injured with Rodgers having already used three substitutes.
With fellow defenders Mamadou Sakho and Jose Enrique sidelined by injuries it may mean more disruption in the Reds back four.
"It's too early [to tell] yet. It looked like his calf had cramped up," said Rodgers when asked about Agger's problem.
"We're just waiting and we'll probably know a wee bit more on Monday."
Agger's central defensive partner for the Oldham game Kolo Toure accepts injuries are just something they have to deal with.
However, Liverpool have already had their fair share to deal with as captain Steven Gerrard has only just come back from a hamstring strain while striker Daniel Sturridge is not likely to return from an ankle sprain until the weekend after next having been out since late November.
"We hope it's not bad news about Daniel," said Toure.
"It's been a tough period with so many games and we're playing in such a tough league.
"Everybody in the squad always gives 100 per cent in training and in games and when you do that you can pick up injuries.
"It's part of the game. We have other players who can step in and play."