Curtis Jones expressed unwavering belief in his ability to make a comeback at Liverpool, even after enduring “tough time”, and has since established himself as a regular member of the first team.
The talented 22-year-old midfielder’s rapid-fire brace played a crucial role in Liverpool’s convincing 3-0 victory against relegation-threatened Leicester on Monday.
Having suffered a shin injury that kept him out of action until mid-October, Jones has now started in the Reds’ last nine Premier League matches, a significant increase compared to his previous two starts throughout the season.
Curtis Jones has found the back of the net three times in his past four appearances, ending an 18-month goal drought. His contributions have been instrumental in Liverpool’s late surge in the Champions League race, with Jurgen Klopp’s side currently sitting fifth, just one point behind the top four.
The England Under-21 international told the club’s official site: “In terms of confidence, I’ve always been the same lad. I’ve always had the belief in myself but it’s been a tough time, I’ve had the injuries and stuff so I’ve not really had a full run of games in the past.
“But I came in against Chelsea and I kept my shirt and I’ve still got the shirt now. I’m enjoying it, I’m being humble and keeping my feet on the ground and I know what it takes, so that’s what I’m doing.
“Being a kid in the academy days I’ve always scored goals and I wouldn’t say I’ve been the star kid but I’ve always been the kid who has jumped up the age groups.
Curtis Jones’ childhood dreams have come true
“Then I came around the first team and it was kind of a shock where the whole of the game changes, so I’ve had to make a change to the whole of my game. But I’m adapting well and I think it’s the best run I’ve had for a while.”
Jones netted two goals in a span of three minutes during the first half, and Trent Alexander-Arnold’s powerful strike from 25 yards added the finishing touch to Liverpool’s victory.
Leicester now finds themselves two points away from safety with only two games remaining. Jamie Vardy acknowledged that in order to have any hope of avoiding relegation, they must secure victories in their upcoming matches against Newcastle on Monday and in their final-day encounter with West Ham.
“We’ve got to put it straight to the back of our minds now,” the striker told the club’s official site. “We’ve got to focus on the next two games and we’ve got to pick two wins up. It’ll be tough but we know we’ve got the talent in that dressing room. It needs to click.
“We’ve got two games left and the minimum we can have is two wins just to give ourselves a chance.
“So, we’ll get back on that training pitch, spend all week looking at Newcastle, how we can exploit the weaknesses and how we stop, obviously, their strengths.
“We’ve got to make sure that we put the 90-minute effort in next week to pick up a win.”