Roberto Firmino has fell out of favour at Liverpool and now former Reds’ winger Stewart Downing has suggested the Brazilian’s time at Anfield could be up.
Speaking to 360 Sports TV, Downing revealed his opinion that “this will probably be” Firmino’s “last year” at Liverpool.
If Firmino was to depart this summer, it would lead to much anguish within the Liverpool fanbase.
Losing one of Klopp’s famous front three with Sadio Mané moving to Bayern has been hard enough for Kopites, but seeing Firmino leave too would rub salt in the wounds.
However, Downing’s argument is strong and one suspects he is correct in his assessment, Firmino will leave Liverpool sooner rather than later.
The Brazilian will be the “backup player” to new recruit Darwin Nuñez and with his contract out next summer, he’ll soon enough be rendered surplus to requirements.
However, Firmino will no doubt be backing himself to regain his spot in Jürgen Klopp’s first choice XI at Liverpool.
The 30-year-old started just 10 games last term, but will seek to pounce on Darwin Nuñez’s inexperience and prevent the Uruguayan from walking straight into Klopp’s Liverpool team.
One thing that remains in Firmino’s favour is the fact he is a very different type of forward to Nuñez, and thus his profile could be more useful in certain games.
Firmino is a false 9. He enjoys dropping into the space in between Liverpool’s wide forwards and linking up play.
Nuñez is more of an out and out striker, getting on the end of things and in behind opposition defences.
It remains unclear whether Liverpool will look to extend Firmino’s contract.
He’d be a useful asset for Klopp to keep around, but with the German tactician looking to rejuvenate his Liverpool frontline, it could be time to move on from Firmino next summer.
So, with Mané gone, Firmino unlikely to receive a contract extension, and Mo Salah’s contract talks at a stalemate, all three parts of Liverpool’s famous front three could be plying their trade elsewhere next season.
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