Danny Ings has lavished praise on former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler this week, telling reporters that the iconic forward has already had a big impact on his Anfield career.
The 23-year-old, who joined us this summer from Burnley, has revealed that he spent time with Fowler in Australia during our tour of the Far East and hopes that his advice will start to pay off soon.
“Robbie gave me a lot of advice, which was nice to learn from,” he told the Liverpool Echo. “He was loved by the fans and scored a few goals for the club. So if I can follow in any of those footsteps, I will be more than happy.
“Robbie just told me to enjoy it, work hard and keep your head down. He said the fans will love my hard work because he sees I’m a hard-working player, and told me to make sure I improve every day – and that’s something I will always do.”
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Prior to his successful spell with Burnley, Ings played for both Bournemouth and Conference South side Dorchester Town, where he went on loan for a nine-game spell back in 2010 – scoring four goals.
Ings believes that his successful route from the lower rungs of the football pyramid has stood him in good stead for a successful career at the top level, which kicked off last season at Burnley and now continues at Liverpool.
“You do the extra work to try to get in the team, but I do the extra work to become better,” the forward continued.
“I have always had that motivation from the lower leagues coming up, which is probably one of the biggest reasons I have got to where I am so far. It is something that I have always had and always will have.”
Ings missed out on a Reds debut last weekend. He was just moments away from replacing Philippe Coutinho at the Britannia Stadium, before the Brazilian’s sublime winning goal resulted in Ings taking his place back on the bench.
However, the striker is confident that he will get his chance soon enough, and told the Echo that he’s willing to be patient – making sure that he’s ready when he is eventually called upon.
“You have to look at how many games Liverpool have got this year, it must be close to 60 games with the Europa League and stuff like that,” he added.
“I am hoping the manager will like to use all his squad for those games, because he needs players he can trust if you are not playing week in, week out. That is what I am preparing myself for and I am sure the other players are as well.”
With Daniel Sturridge, Christian Benteke and Divock Origi to compete with for a spot up front, it would be easy to be intimidated, but Ings insists that he enjoys learning from his fellow players and says he rarely feels threatened by them.
“I am a player who likes to look at other players and learn from them,” he continued. “There are all kinds of different players here and all kinds of different talents, so it is only a positive for me.
“Being at Burnley and playing every week was fantastic and felt great, but I knew there was going to be a transition period here where I have to be patient, bide my time and work hard every day to become better, to hopefully get my chance soon enough.
“I believe in my own ability and my philosophy is that even when I am not playing the games, I am still learning every day and becoming better. It is important obviously that I don’t get disappointed when I am not starting games because you have a lot of big players here.”