Friday, 14 August 2009

Aquilani hopes to do the Red shirt proud

New signing Alberto Aquilani has spoken about his desire to get fit and do the Liverpool shirt proud:

“I am really pleased to be here and this is an important occasion for me," said Aquilani in the Echo.

“Liverpool is one of the strongest teams in the world and I’m very happy. I have never played at Anfield but I have heard a lot about the unique atmosphere.

“There is great history here. It’s world famous and not just because of the five European Cups. I grew up in Rome in the years after the (1984) final between Liverpool and Roma.

“I was very much aware of that final and you can’t ignore the huge past this club has.

“To play for a big club like this means a lot to me and I hope to play a very important role.

“The manager knows my characteristics and good points. I want to fulfil all the hope he has and I’m want to stay here for as long as possible.

Aquilani also revealed that playing for Benitez was a key factor in his decision to join the Reds:

“Rafa was the deciding factor for me and I am proud he has chosen me,” he said in the Echo.

“I was very aware of him and appreciated the quality of his work long before this opportunity presented itself. I really like the way the team plays.

“Everyone has helped me so much since I arrived, but especially the manager and (chief scout) Eduardo (Macia).

“They have made me feel at home and made me see how important I am to them.

“I have met some of the players but not many because of the internationals. I know they are going to be great and I won’t have any problems fitting in.”

Aquilani also spoke of his intentions to play for his international team:

"He said I'm coming to play for a very important team and that if I do well here he will definitely call me up. The World Cup is a big objective for me but in order to be there I have to play well for Liverpool.”

“The Premier League is the most difficult league. It’s going to be a high level but I’m very excited.

“Obviously the football here is different to Italian football. It is faster, more athletic and the teams are stronger.

“This is proved by the fact that in the later stages of the Champions League you always see English teams.

“But I don’t think adapting to the Premier League will be a problem for me and I’m looking forward to it.”

“It was a difficult choice to leave Rome,” he said.

“I was born there, I was raised there. I was and still am a fan of the team.

“I knew I would only leave for a club such as Liverpool. This is a life choice for me and it is a good decision for everyone involved.

“I’m grateful to Roma for allowing me to play in Serie A and for the national team and for allowing me to come and play for a team like Liverpool.

“I’m very well aware of the pressure this club is under and the pressure I will be under.

“If you want to play for a big club then you have to be ready for the pressure.

“Now I hope to grow here and do this shirt proud.”

“Riise is a good friend of mine and he has spoken to me a lot about Liverpool, the Kop and the great fans here,” he said.

“He spoke very highly of Rafa Benitez and said he would help me grow as a player.

“I also know Andrea very well from our time together with the national team and he told me I would be in for a fantastic atmosphere here.”

“I’m the kind of midfielder who moves around a lot – combining quality with movement. I’m not a static player.

“I’ve always liked the system they play here and I have long thought of Steven Gerrard as the best midfielder in the world.

“I’m very proud to have the opportunity to play alongside him and I hope I can learn a lot from him.”

“It’s a shame I can’t play straightaway but I’m putting my all into getting better as I cannot wait to start playing for this club,” he added.

“I am doubly happy to be here because the doctors here have diagnosed the problem properly and quickly.

“They know exactly what to do with my ankle and they are confident it can be cured for good.

“At Roma I was starting to do a little bit of training but here the doctors prefer for me to take it easy.

“I don’t really know when I’ll make my debut but hopefully I won’t be out for too much longer.

“I’m here for five years so there is no point rushing it and having to stop again later on.”

The player also gave his reasoning behind picking the number 4 shirt:

"Some of my favoured numbers were already taken and No.4 in Italy is considered to be a midfielder's number, which is why I went for it. I don't like high numbers that have no meaning," said the player to the Official site.

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