Roberto Firmino vs Raheem Sterling
Every season the fans look up to a player who will take them to victories and will give them a taste of some silverware. Some rise up to the occasion brilliantly writing their name in the folklore of the Club while some become just a name in the team sheet.
Raheem Sterling steered a move away from Liverpool (credits to Aidy Ward) and joined Manchester City and his move to City was the highest transfer fee for an Englishman. His antics at the end of season angered the Liverpool faithful and the budding England star left the reds on a bad note.
When Sterling left, Liverpool were in search for an attacking player who can spearhead the attack and bring the much-needed goals. In came Roberto Firmino, the swashbuckling Brazilian from Hoffenheim, a small city in Germany. But he had a lot of good reputation back there and was the best player in their squad.
Roberto Firmino didn’t have an easy start to his life in Merseyside. He was branded a flop by many after his performances in the first 3-4 months and failed to get in the team at times under Brendan Rodgers. But with the arrival of Jurgen Klopp who is a known admirer of the Brazilian, Firmino has blossomed into a more complete player and now is inarguably the first name on the Red’s team sheet.
Raheem Sterling has gone and quietly has settled down to life in Manchester. With playing around the likes of David Silva and Sergio Aguero, the 20-year-old has definitely improved his game and has done quite well considering that this is his first season at a new club after his big money move. The one thing Sterling has definitely improved upon during his time at Liverpool is his finishing skills.
Though Raheem Sterling has 2 more goals than Firmino at this stage, overall contribution of the Brazilian is far greater to the team than the talented youngster. Where Sterling contributes very little in the defensive work, Firmino is known for his tracking back and winning the ball early after losing possession. A trait most favourable and the favourite of Jurgen Klopp.
While Raheem has 11 goals and 4 assists to his name, Firmino has 9 goals and 8 assists to his name. Surprisingly for an attacking player, Firmino averaged roughly 2 tackles per game. Sterling averages 1.4 key passes per game, whereas Firmino is just ahead of him with 1.7 passes. The only area where Raheem beats Firmino is the passing percentage, averaging 85% while the Brazilian averaging a 77% passing accuracy.
Though Sterling has had a decent first season, but it has been Roberto Firmino who has caught the eye of everyone and is being hailed as Liverpool’s next talisman. He has gone about his work rather silently and is undoubtedly one of the best players in 2016 in the Premier League. If he continues his rich vein of form, he will outperform both Raheem Sterling and Dimitri Payet, who is considered a favourite for the PFA player of the year.