A spectacular end of the season and Champions League final date with Real Madrid might push Firmino to becoming Brazil’s main man in Russia
Roberto Firmino is having the season of his life, but the best part of it is yet to come, as the UEFA Champions League final and the FIFA World Cup, will represent his most important challenges of the campaign. Liverpool have gone a long way and cemented themselves a spot in the European final, for the first time in 11 years, and that’s partly due to their Brazilian star.
Philippe Coutinho completed a major transfer to the Catalan giants in January, in the hope of finally achieving silverware for the first time in his career – which he has succeeded in doing, with the evidence of being crowned champion of Spain after winning the local double, including the Spanish cup final against Sevilla, where he was able to find the net from the spot. But following the elimination against AS Roma in the quarter final, one could wonder whether he rushed his move and lost the opportunity of competing in a Champions League final, which is practically the most important club competition, not just in Europe but in the whole world.
However, Liverpool fans will not complain and can brag about having retained their most precious Brazilian, in Roberto Firmino. The 26-year old has been brilliant throughout the whole season, and most probably their best player in the Champions League, having scored 10 goals and mustered 7 assists, a total of 17 involvements, just one behind Cristiano Ronaldo who is on 18. Following a brace of goals and assists in the first leg against AS Roma, the versatile attacker went on to set-up Sadio Mané in the Italian capital, as the Reds guaranteed their way through.
This comes right after a deal was recently reached between the player and the club, to extend Firmino’s contract and tie him at Anfield for the next five years, making him the highest-paid among their rooster. It is difficult to complain about it because he has really earned this extension and because the club has decided to maintain their best players from now on, and intend to stick to this promise as long as possible.
With African stars Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah, the Brazil international has formed the best offensive trio in Europe this season. A combination of intelligence, pace, tactical awareness and end product has made Liverpool’s attack deadly, to say the least. But the situation differs with the national team, as Brazil boss Tite is still reluctant on giving Roberto his well-deserved opportunity in the starting lineup.
With the FIFA World Cup being on the doors, Roberto Firmino needs a spectacular performance against Spanish giants and reigning back-to-back European champions Real Madrid in the final, in order to make himself an even bigger case as to why he deserves to displace Gabriel Jesus in the team.