He may be a lead character in at least two absolute Anfield bangers, but odds are football fans that don’t follow the Reds specifically are still at least somewhat in the dark about the ability of Roberto Firmino Barbosa de Oliveira.
Now in his fifth year on Merseyside, the former Hoffenheim midfielder is well established among the Anfield faithful as not only the pivotal hub of the Reds’ devastating front three, but also the pace setter of Jürgen Klopp’s famous counterpress.
The occasional obscene flick aside, though, the Brazilian’s game is more graft, effort and fundamentally excellent decision making than it is flash and extravagance; entirely unlike his off-pitch personality and fashion sense. Thankfully, his current manager knows exactly what he has in the 28-year old.
“Hopefully it stays like this, [him] hardly missing a game! He missed a few and that was not too cool, but Bobby - what can I say about him that not everybody knows already?” Klopp told the club’s official site.
“He’s an incredibly important player. He enjoys it so much to play in this team, to be really there with all these super guys around him.
“That’s what helps him then, of course,” the manager continued. “If you have the speed around you, you can be this little cheeky guy in between the lines, being there and scoring the goals. Yeah, he’s a very valuable player for us.”
Cheeky is absolutely an adjective that can reasonably be assigned to the honorable Bobby Shmurda, alongside excellent and utterly unhinged. Having taken his goal tally on the season to two at the weekend — to go with his two assists — and his Premier League total in Liverpool red to 50, Firmino is on pace to deliver his most prolific year on Merseyside yet. Hopefully, he gets to top it off with a shiny league title to go with his chompers.