Roberto Firmino has had an exceptional season – and the proof of that is Liverpool winning the Premier League and possibly with the highest points total in English football history.
Without him, this wouldn’t have been possible. His style enables Mo Salah and Sadio Mane to score the goals they do – and both have plundered over 20 in all competitions for the third consecutive season.
But it’s not unfair to say Firmino has lacked confidence in front of goal. He’s yet to score an Anfield one in the Premier League this term and on Saturday, hit the post with a scuffed shot, which has become quite typical of his shooting.
Jurgen Klopp has provided support for the Brazilian, explaining that he won’t let the lack of goals develop into a ‘psychological’ issue.
“It cannot become a psychological problem for him because Bobby played an outstanding game today and we don’t judge him, so I hope he won’t read your newspaper if you make a story of it,” said Klopp, reported in Goal.
“We just don’t think about it. It’s not important who scores. We need Bobby for other things. We need Bobby in exactly the spaces where he was today. We need him as the link-up for all the other things.
“We only have chances because Bobby plays the way he plays, and he will score, there’s absolutely no doubt about it. We are not worried at all about that, because he played an outstanding game today and was involved in so many decisive situations.”
If Firmino can add goals to his already unrivalled linkup play, we’d be talking about a Player of the Season contender.
His confidence when shooting is clearly lacking, or maybe he’s had some horrible luck, as the 60-odd shots he’s had this term without scoring represent a statistical anomaly.
We’re backing him to net v Arsenal – he loves tormenting the Gunners!