When Liverpool played Bournemouth in October, Roberto Firmino produced a promising display after a difficult start to life in England with adaptation and injuries. Early on under Brendan Rodgers, the Brazilian looked off the pace and a little lost at times. The Capital One Cup match was the fourth game of the Jürgen Klopp era, one where the former Hoffenheim star finally looked at home. Since then, Roberto Firmino has underlined his considerable potential with excellent performances against Chelsea, Manchester City, Leicester City, Arsenal, and Norwich City.
Alex Teixeira might be the big transfer target of the January transfer window, but Liverpool have not yet seen the best of one Brazilian who was signed in the previous transfer window. His understanding with another -- the magical Philippe Coutinho -- should be a source of much joy for Liverpool fans in 2016. Over the past two full seasons in the Bundesliga, Kevin De Bruyne was the king of assists with 26. Roberto Firmino, however, was heir to the throne with 21 of his own. Ronaldinho -- a player who weaved spell after spell with Brazil and Barcelona -- is in no doubt about the abilities of his compatriot.
I didn't ever question if he would be a great player for Liverpool, I knew that he would be. He's one of the best at what he does in the world. He's in the same class as Ozil, Silva, Iniesta, and all the other great players who play that role. He's the player that I'm sure Klopp will build his new Liverpool team around. Klopp is one of the best coaches in the world, he will know that Liverpool need better players, he will know that Firmino will need better players around him to get the most out of his game. I'm sure when he joined Liverpool, Klopp was promised he could bring in his own players, and with Firmino at the centre of the team, there's no reason Liverpool cannot challenge once again.
David Silva. Mesut Özil. Andrés Iniesta. Ronaldinho made sure he mentioned players who need no introduction to any football fan. Before Firmino arrived at Anfield, he was a player considered to have the skills and qualities required to enhance Liverpool's attack. What he was doing in Germany drew the attention of Europe's top clubs, which was no surprise to anyone who watched German football. Maybe it's something to think about when thinking about another Brazilian.
Roberto Firmino is the real deal. Ronaldinho knows. Klopp knows. Soon everyone else will know too.