For those Liverpool supporters with an interest in the Bundesliga, the signing of Roberto Firmino in the summer of 2015 was a coup for the club. Before making the move to Merseyside, Firmino had been impressing for several seasons in Germany while performing regular feats for Hoffenheim FC. But the Brazilian attacker’s play under Brendan Rodgers didn’t exactly paint a crystal clear picture of what Roberto Firmino is all about. The team was struggling, Firmino was trying to learn the tactics, settle into the league and find his place in the side. And then a back injury during a League Cup match against Carlisle United really brought his progress to a halt. But then, the story changes. Because Jürgen Klopp.
Klopp requires hard-working individuals in his teams. Every player must run. And they also must run. And after they run, they should run. Roberto Firmino just happens to have the personality to suit this style to a tittle.
“I’ve been quite hyperactive since I was a child.” said Firmino.
“I don’t like to stop. I do have moments when I like to relax but I’m always moving and that has always been the case since I was a boy. Nowadays that is the only way you can play football.
“All of us have our qualities that add to the team. But our manager wants each of us to be like a runner. Don’t stop. Never stop. Keep going. That is the way it is for him and that is the way I like to play. You always have to be in motion.
“It comes easy to me to run. I picked a lot of it up from Germany. I had four-and-a-half years there and I learned you have to be on the automatic button. Press it and you go, you keep running, chasing and working. I always try to do a bit more than I am asked.”
Firmino has started this season in excellent form. His movement, his connections with teammates, his finishing have all been outstanding. And he is starting to show us all what the real Roberto Firmino is all about. Certainly, one of the first names on the team sheet under Jürgen Klopp and, hopefully, on the scoresheet against Chelsea.