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Liverpool’s new signing Luis Diaz has started life in Merseyside on fire with a string of impressive, tenacious performances under Jurgen Klopp. However, fellow Colombian and ex-Newcastle star Faustino Asprilla believes the diminutive winger is being ‘eaten up by anxiety’ in front of goal.
Diaz, 25, signed for Liverpool in late January from Porto in a deal that could reach £50million if certain add-ons are met.
Having scored 41 goals in 125 games for the Portuguese giants, the star had done enough to pique the interest of boss Klopp as a long-term replacement for Sadio Mane.
He has started well at Anfield, and scored his first goal for the club in February in the 3-1 win against relegation-threatened Norwich.
But despite his good performances, Diaz will now be looking to get on the scoresheet more frequently to help the Reds achieve a potential quadruple.
And his lack of goals despite having joined the club only six weeks ago means that he is suffering off the pitch, according to Asprilla.
“I think ‘Lucho’ [Diaz] is being eaten up by anxiety,” he told Marca Colombia.
“He’s playing very well but when it comes to scoring, he’s making the wrong decision in that play, we saw he had to score first.
“In the Copa America, he scored an almost impossible goal (against Brazil in the group stage), and now he has a chance to score first time, and he couldn’t. Anxiety is killing him.”
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Former Newcastle man Asprilla has previously showcased that Colombians can score frequently for English sides.
The Tulua-born star managed 18 goals in just 61 games for the Magpies in a spell that lasted two years, although half of those goals came in the Champions League.
With Diaz only starting in five of his nine appearances, the goals will likely come with more game time and experience at Anfield.
He has impressed with his determined performances already, becoming a fan favourite in the process.
And former star Adam Lallana can’t believe how well he has adjusted to life in England – saying he was ’embarrassed’ he hadn’t heard of him until the move.
“I still can’t believe how well Diaz has settled, having been a player that has gone to Liverpool and knowing how difficult it was to settle,” Lallana said.
“I am not sure what Diaz’s English is like. But coming from a different country in January, and to play the way he has played, is absolutely phenomenal.
“I actually feel a little embarrassed that I hadn’t heard about him before. That just shows the level of recruitment at Liverpool. They have been spot on in that kind of £50million bracket. With Salah, Mane, Firmino and Jota. They have just got it right.”
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