The Colombian winger reflected on the instant impact he was able to make for his new club following his January move.
In the likes of Virgil van Dijk and Luis Suarez, Liverpool have had some standout January signings in recent years. Players who arrived in January and made an instant impact despite the difficulty of making a mid-season switch.
In Luis Diaz, it’s clear they now have another, with the 25-year-old Colombian winger joining one of the best two or three sides in Europe and appearing from day one as though he might have always played for Liverpool Football Club.
“The thing you can notice and see the most is the intensity of the game here,” Diaz said of his first months in English football. “Tactically how we set up and the fact that I also have to defend might well be the most difficult thing so far.
“I do have that aspect to my game, though, as I spent time playing at Porto and I think I managed to pick up and learn a lot there. I will keep on improving here as well but I’m delighted to have settled in the way that I have.”
Manager Jürgen Klopp has noted part of the reason for Diaz’ instant impact is that Liverpool play a similar style to former club Porto, and Diaz confirmed the manager’s early focus was on allowing him to simply play the way he was used to.
“At the start, I think it was more about [Klopp] telling me what I’ve been doing up to now,” Diaz said of his adjustment to a new club. “He was trying to put across to me that all it was about was for me to keep doing what I’ve been used to.
“He wanted me to know that I’d been performing very well up to now and that I should just try to keep on doing more of the same. To play my football with joy and happiness, while obviously incorporating the preferred tactical plans.”
While there has been an increase in focus on Liverpool’s specific team tactics over the months since he’s joined, it’s been built on a foundation Diaz was already familiar with—and now the goal is to help make this season special.
“The most important thing for me is to help the team,” he added, “to keep going in the same style that I’ve started, and to keep working hard in training just the same as ever, so I can achieve big things here, which I want the most.”