It goes without saying that Roberto Firmino has been far away from his devastating best throughout the 2020/21 campain.
The Brazilian has just two goals for Liverpool in 19 appearances this season.
Fortunately, Liverpool’s midweek fixture comes against an opponent whom Firmino has a favourable record against; Tottenham Hotspur.
It was against the Lilywhites who Jurgen Klopp won his first piece of silverware for Liverpool which ultimatley proved the catalyst for further success.
Firmino himself has enjoyed an impressive reign of form against Spurs, with the Reds No.9 striking the winning goal during the most recent meeting – a 1-0 win at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium back in January.
It was a big moment for Firmino as he produced the cutting edge moment in front-of-goal to register a vital victory on the road during Liverpool’s title procession last season.
The goal itself was exquisitely taken after Firmino left defender Japhet Tanganga for dead with a perfectly weighted touch before converting a thunderous strike past Hugo Lloris.
Firmino has won his previous four league matches against Tottenham – scoring in three of them.
He has an act for scoring in the big matches, with Firmino amongst the goals during vital wins last season against Spurs, Leicester, Wolves and Chelsea, both home and away.
Even this season, one of Firmino’s two goals came during an important 4- 0 victory against Leicester at Anfield last month.
More of the same?
It is no secret that Firmino could use this fixture as a catalyst to ignite his season.
Having started every PL match this season, Firmino has greatly underperformed and had it not been for Diogo Jota’s recent injury, his place in the team would be under scrutiny.
Against Fulham, during the dour 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage, Firmino was worryingly off the pace. This needs to change and fast.
Firmino is renowned for his meticulous hold-up play and ability to exploit holes in the opposition’s defence, Liverpool desperately need this in the midst of the current injury crisis.
His form no longer warrants him to be an automatic starter, but injuries dictate that Klopp has no other option than to trust that Firmino will improve.
Tonight is an ideal time to start. Tottenham are notorious for their defence minded approach and it is a match that could hinge on the finest of margins.
Similarly to last time Liverpool faced-off against Jose Mourinho, Klopp will hope that another moment of magic from Firmino can make the difference during the top-of-the-table bout under the lights at Anfield.
- Is Nat Phillips being overlooked for key Liverpool fixtures
- Liverpool have seen a noticeable decline in key attacking component
- Jurgen Klopp has a returning weapon in the form of Oxlade-Chamberlain
- Reaction to Liverpool’s reported stance on Dayot Upamecano
- Thiago Alcantara sends a message to Liverpool fans
- Report: Liverpool to rip up transfer plans and spend heavily in January