Wolverhampton Wanderers striker Benik Afobe has set his sights on emulating Cristiano Ronaldo, citing the Real Madrid superstar's consistent level of performance as the standard for him to aspire to set.
The former Arsenal marksman has made an impressive start to life at Molineux after leaving the Emirates Stadium on a permanent deal in the January transfer window, netting five goals in seven appearances for the Championship outfit so far.
Afobe's overall tally for 2014/15 now stands at an impressive 24 goals following a productive loan spell at MK Dons during the first half of the campaign, after Arsene Wenger allowed the Gunners academy starlet to take in a spell in the third tier to help continue his development.
However, the Arsenal manager could live to regret cashing in on the 22-year-old if he achieves his ultimate goal of replicating the Portugal international's fine form at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Asked about the pressure that comes with fans expectation - not just at Wolves, but in general - the former England U21 international explained that it's part and parcel of being a professional footballer, adding that he relishes the challenge of leading the line.
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"There is pressure, but look at Ronaldo – he scores every week," Afobe told The Express and Star. "I have to imagine how world-class players feel. They have got the whole world watching them, yet they deliver in World Cup finals and Champions League finals.
"If they can keep consistent, then so can I because they are human beings just like myself."
With 14 league games still to play between now and the end of the season, assistant manager Joe Gallen has tipped Afobe to hit the 30 goal mark, especially given the confident mood the talisman is currently in.
Work in progress
Goals haven't always come easy to the former Gunner since making the step up to senior football, though, and Afobe revealed how a pep talk with childhood idol and Arsenal legend Ian Wright helped improve his composure in front of goal.
"Ian Wright is someone I have spoken to and I watch clips of him because you've got to take things from other people," he said. "Before my first game at MK Dons, Karl Robinson (manager) called me into his office and I thought: 'Oh no, what have I done?'
"But Ian Wright was on the phone. He said 'Benik how are you? I want to work with you. I believe in you and all the staff have told me great things about you'.
"I don't want to go into exactly what he said, but it was a very positive phone call. He is someone I have always looked up to and for him to say he has faith in me and people have told him good things about me is a huge honour."
Afobe netted twice in Wolves' emphatic 5-0 win against Rotherham on Saturday, and will be looking to get on the scoresheet again when Kenny Jackett's side take on Fulham at home this evening.
Arsenal fans: Was Arsene Wenger right to sell Benik Afobe in January? Do you think he has what it takes to become an established Premier League striker? Share your thoughts below...
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