Roberto Firmino proved Jurgen Klopp completely right with his performance against Leicester City. The Brazilian was the story of the day.
Two weeks ago, Jurgen Klopp discussed Roberto Firmino. He wasn’t happy, though.
The Brazilian attracted criticism from some corners with poor performances. In fact, he had one goal and zero Premier League assists ahead of Sunday.
“I would feel really embarrassed if I had to mention now the qualities of Bobby Firmino,” Klopp said at the time.
“I can’t help these people [criticising Firmino], sorry. That’s how it is.”
Klopp backed his player, then, believing the criticism was wrong and started him against Manchester City. He then started him against v Leicester – a huge game for an injury-stricken Liverpool.
And Firmino proved Klopp completely right. He put in a wonderful performance – his best of the season – and reminded everyone else why he’s in the XI every week.
Firmino v Leicester
Firmino didn’t just score against Leicester – he was a threat throughout. He had the joint-most shots in the game (six) and was incredible unlucky not to score more, given he hit the woodwork twice.
The £29m man also completed four dribbles – the most – and created a chance for his teammate. It was the first key pass he’s managed for four games.
And Firmino’s passing was just better than usual. His 48 completed is the most he’s managed this season, while he did it at the second-highest completion rate.
Firmino also won a tackle and didn’t give away any fouls. So defensively, too, he was what Liverpool wanted.
For what it’s worth, we agreed with Klopp at the time. Firmino is such a key player and so good at what he does that virtually all of the criticism was unwarranted.
Still, we won’t pretend that we didn’t have our doubts. But Klopp was right once again and Firmino looks set to contribute to another good season.