Morientes awaits breakthrough

Fernando Morientes is sure that the goals will flow freely once he breaks his duck at Liverpool FC.

By Adrian Clarke

First final
The former Real Madrid CF striker has already helped his new club reach the first domestic final of the English season, the English League Cup, thanks to a 2-0 aggregate win against lower division side Watford FC, where they will meet Chelsea FC at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium on February 27.

Good impression
The Spanish international believes that will be the first of many big occasions he will experience as part of Rafael Benítez's new-look Liverpool squad. "My first impressions of Liverpool are very, very good," Morientes told "It is one of the biggest clubs in Europe and I am sure that we can achieve our plan of being one of the select group of clubs that compete for the biggest titles over the next few years.

Patience required
"I rate my new team-mates very highly but it's difficult to compare them with the ones I left behind at Real Madrid because it's a totally different club and style of football," he added. "But whatever happens, this team will give their all for the club and for the fans. We still have chances to win trophies this season but I think it's better for us to be prudent. In time I am confident that we will be winners."

Emergency situation
Two of Liverpool's main strikers, Djibril Cissé and Florent Sinama-Pongolle, have long-term injuries and are not expected to play again this season. So with a shortage of options up front for Benítez, Morientes is under pressure to forge a quick understanding with Czech international Milan Baroš in the Reds' attack.

Important partnership
The Spaniard is quietly assured that they will succeed. He said: "I can't promise that my partnership with Milan Baroš will bring trophies to Anfield this season but that is our target for the next couple of seasons. I think the Baroš-Morientes attack will be very successful because we are goalscorers. We haven't had much time to get to know each other off the pitch yet, but I'm sure we will get on fine on the field as well as off it."

Settling in
After spending seven-and-a-half trophy-laden years in Madrid, Morientes could be excused for needing time to settle into his new surroundings in north-west England but with a large contingent of Spanish players, as well as a Spanish coach at Anfield, the talented forward admits he is feeling quite at home already.

Spanish Armada
"I am feeling very comfortable in Liverpool and the fact that Rafa Benítez, [Antonio] Nunez, [Xabi] Alonso, [Luís] García and Josemi are here to help me understand everything quicker and easier also helps," he said. "They have explained to me what Liverpool means and I've been grateful for that."

Early conversations
Morientes added: "We all realise that we have to improve our play and our results, so all advice is gratefully received. So far I have spoken more with the Spaniards, and they have mainly told me how the training plan works, and how we like to play as a team.

'Great potential'
"All I can do is ask the Liverpool fans to be patient with me because I am sure that some positive results and plenty of goals will arrive soon," he said. "Having played with my new team, I think we have great potential both for the present moment and definitely for the future."