Roberto Firmino will be crucial for Liverpool when they face Manchester United on Saturday in the Premier League, according to Kop legend Phil Thompson.
The Reds head into the game at Old Trafford one place and two points below their bitter rivals but are in a much better form than Saturday’s hosts, Manchester United.
Mohamed Salah has been in tremendous form since the start of the season and has already bagged 32 goals in all competitions.
The Egyptian has been a revelation since joining the Reds and has rightfully hogged all the limelight. But very few understand the contributions of striker Roberto Firmino, who has scored 13 goals in the Premier League this season, while also creating goals with his 7 assists.
Firmino has formed a potent attack alongside Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane at Liverpool and former defender Phil Thompson feels the Brazilian will play a key role for his side when they face United.
“My big thing in this game is that I think there will be a red card, which could decide which way it goes,” Thompson wrote in his column for Sky Sports.
“I don’t think Mourinho will want to open up because he knows a draw isn’t the worst thing.
“However, when you’ve got players like Alexis Sanchez and Paul Pogba going chasing after the ball and showing a lack of positional discipline, it is difficult for him to make the team play in such a structured way.
“I would think Roberto Firmino will be the key man. I know Mohamed Salah scores the goals. But when Firmino plays well he holds the ball up, drawing fouls, he brings the quicker players into play. It is also a big test for Liverpool’s defence and how Virgil van Dijk controls Romelu Lukaku.”
Just like Salah and Mane, Firmino has been in sensational form and is integral to everything good that Jurgen Klopp’s side do.
With his goals and assists, the Brazilian has helped us to third place in the league and through to the Champions League quarter-finals.
The way Firmino links up with Salah and Mane is simply a treat to watch and I really feel he has become one of the best strikers in the Premier League after Klopp moved him to a central role.