Jurgen Klopp has again taken time to wax lyrical about Liverpool’s Brazilian forward Roberto Firmino.
Our manager loves the no.11, who was signed under Brendan Rodgers’ reign in the summer preceding Klopp’s appointment. Rodgers didn’t know how to deploy Firmino, but as soon as Klopp came in, the attacker began to show his undeniable class.
Firmino was exceptional in Bundesliga for Hoffenheim and when we finalised the £29m transfer (via BBC), Klopp thought we’d got a steal.
What the attacker’s done since proves he was right.
Klopp told the Guardian: “The first thing I did when I left Dortmund, I took my phone and deleted all the numbers so I was not reachable. So I didn’t speak to anyone to offer advice, about Firmino or anyone else. Nobody asked me about him but he was a player I thought was one of the best in the Bundesliga. So when I saw that Liverpool had signed him I thought, ‘How could Liverpool do this?’ They were not in their 100% best moment and other clubs would have spent more on him, so I thought, immediately, ‘What a good transfer for them.’ When I heard about it I thought they had made a good signing, because I felt pretty sure clubs would have paid a lot more for him.”
This term, Firmino has established himself as Liverpool’s first-choice ‘centre-forward’ when everyone is fit, keeping Daniel Sturridge and Divock Origi out of the side. He’s scored six goals in all competitions, but it’s his overall contribution which is most important.
The 25-year-old sets the tone for our press, closes down space intelligently and links up especially well with Coutinho, his best friend who’s sadly out until Christmas.
Getting the pair back on the pitch together as soon as possible will be key to our chances of success this campaign.