Borussia Dortmund Axel Witsel says he will try to shoot more often after scoring his third goal since moving to the Bundesliga leaders in the summer in their 5-1 win over Hannover.
The Belgian defensive midfielder has now scored in back-to-back games, after deciding Dortmund's 1-0 win over RB Leipzig in their first outing of 2019, and he admits he will start to heed the advice of his father by pulling the trigger more often.
"I still have to get better shooting from outside the box," Witsel admitted after his 91st-minute strike put the cherry on top of another fine win for Dortmund. "I try to train this and today I was happy because my Dad was telling me all the time 'you need to shoot more, you need to shoot more! You don't shoot enough!' He was here today. He's always at our home games."
Witsel's father is not the only one who has been telling him to take aim more often. Dortmund coach Lucien Favre has also encouraged him to copy his teammates Marco Reus, Jadon Sancho, Paco Alcacer and Mario Götze by getting involved more in front of goal, although Witsel stresses that his role is more building up attacks than finishing them off.
"Dortmund didn't buy me to score goals – maybe I score five or six a year," he said. "To start with, it's not my job. When I can do it, though, I'm happy. The coach is right – I have to get better still in terms of this, like shooting more, but I'll try for the rest of the season to score more goals."
The 101-times Belgium international - with nine goals for his country - is only one shy of his best single-season haul since leaving his native Belgium in 2011, having previously scored seven in three different seasons for Standard Liege.
But he did the job he was signed for on Saturday, in what proved to be challenging conditions
"I'm happy," he said. "Today was a difficult game because Hannover pressed high and it was always man to man, so the first half was a little bit difficult for us to make the difference – we had to dribble and make one-twos.
"Maybe we didn't play like normally we are used to playing, but in the end we've won 5-1. In the second half, they dropped and we got more space and we got the three points."