Brazilian Roberto Firmino is one of the stars of this Bundesliga season. Will we see him at the Anfield soon?
Liverpool are enjoying a superb season largely thanks to top goalscorer Luis Suarez.
The Uruguayan striker has 24 goals (without a single penalty) so far and apart from that, has 12 assists to his name.
So far so good, but Suarez showed in the first half of the season that he has the quality as a striker to score in almost every match and has dropped off somewhat since.
He needs the support of a strong attacking midfield that provides him with pinpoint passes up front. That’s one f the areas in which Liverpool could improve.
The player who is trying to fill this role is Brazilian Philippe Coutinho, but his output has not been as spectacular as he may have hoped, with only three goals and four assists.
You can just imagine how many goals more the currently best attack in the Premier League with Suarez and Sturridge would score, if they had an attacking midfielder behind them who is able to contribute to their attacking game just as much as they do.
Of course Eden Hazard would fit into this profile, but a rather more realistic version could be a young Brazilian player from the Bundesliga, named Roberto Firmino.
The reason why this 22-year old playmaker isn’t too famous just yet, is that he plays for a team called TSG Hoffenheim, which is in the 10th position in the current Bundesliga table.
This team is fascinating because of their goal difference of 52-52 after 24 matches which means that they not only have the worst Bundesliga defense after Hamburg, but also the best attack after Bayern and Dortmund.
One of the main reasons for that is Firmino's performances with so far 12 goals and 9 assists, which shows that he has contributed to a goal in almost every match of the season. In the German Cup he has even scored 6 goals in 4 matches, so he definitely knows where the goal is.
When talking about this numbers one also has to take into account that Firmino’s team members at Hoffenheim don’t have quite the same quality as the players at Bayern or Dortmund, barring one of the most promising German strikers in their squad named Kevin Volland.
So being in the Top 5 in the goalscoring charts in this Bundesliga season while playing for a team like Hoffenheim is really an achievement. His assists are impressive because while Volland is a good prospect, he is no Luis Suarez.
So, is Firmino already good enough for a move to a big team like Liverpool?
Well at present he appears to have everything they could probably look for in a player. Not only has he got a brilliant technique but he can also provide excellent passes to the strikers.
He knows exactly when it’s better to look for the direct way to the goal which makes him more potent to score goals than for example other players in his position like Draxler or Ozil.
Firmino is one of the most underrated players in the Bundesliga and football fans in Germany don’t understand why Scolari hasn’t thought about calling him to the Brazilian national team yet.
Thanks to his young age he can still develop a lot and has the potential to become a real international super star. At Liverpool he would find exactly the technically strong strikers he would need to develop his brilliant attacking game.
With a player like Luis Suarez in front og him would probably shine even more than he already does and Liverpool could reinforce their efforts to become a real power in the Premier League again.
Spending the rumoured €15 million for a proposition like this certainly doesn’t sound like the worst deal the club could make this summer.