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.
“It’s time for a change right now” – Former USA international urges Liverpool target to leave Bundesliga giants
Borussia Dortmund winger Christian Pulisic has been told that it is time for a change, with the January window around the corner.
The Liverpool Echo adds that the Reds have kept tabs on the 20-year-old and Chelsea are also interested in signing the winger.
Former United States international Alexi Lalas believes it is time for the winger to leave Dortmund for bigger things in the future.
“There are teams all over the world that would love to have Christian Pulisic right now. I think he’s done a great job in going over to Germany, he’s done a great job at Borussia Dortmund.
“But I think it’s time for a change right now for Christian Pulisic, and a change to an even higher profile team.”
The report adds that the American is out of contract in 2020 and should he refuse to extend his stay at Dortmund, the club could sell him in the coming window.
Liverpool could do with someone like Pulisic in their side, and he would certainly do well under his former boss Klopp.
The American is one of the bright players in the Bundesliga but hasn’t been great in the current campaign for Borussia Dortmund.
The youngster has been upstaged by Jadon Sancho, who is playing better than him at the moment.
“I rate him among the very best at the top” – Liverpool star heaps praise on teammate after Bournemouth win
Liverpool star Georginio Wijnaldum believes James Milner is one of the best players in the world and praised the versatility of the 32-year-old.
The Englishman played his 500th Premier League game for the Reds in our 4-0 win over Bournemouth and even captained the side as Jordan Henderson was on the bench.
“Which player in the world can you play in every position in a team and he will do really well in all of those positions? There is no-one, apart from Milner.
“He has played in so many different roles — and he is always brilliant. That’s why I rate him among the very best at the top, I really do.”
The Dutchman added that Milner always puts his 100% on the pitch, which is good for the team.
“What Milner is capable of at this level, I have never seen other players do that. Milner will always get great marks, no matter on what position our manager puts him.”
The midfielder has been used all around the park by Jurgen Klopp. The former Leeds United star even played a majority of a season as our first-choice left-back ahead of Alberto Moreno during the 2016/17 season.
The 32-year-old has only gotten better with each season under his belt and Wijnaldum highlighted the professionalism of the midfielder.
“Some players can get frustrated when they have to switch positions. But with Milner, you will never see a mood swing. His attitude just stays the same.”
The Reds play Napoli in a huge Champions League clash, and we can be sure that Milner will give his 100% on the pitch.
“It’s like one of those goals you’d see Maradona score” – BBC commentators in awe of Liverpool star in 4-0 win over Bournemouth
The Egyptian rounded the Cherries goalkeeper Asmir Begovic twice, before beating a couple of players on the goal-line.
The 26-year-old won a lot of plaudits for the goal, and one BBC commentator claimed this goal had an air of “Diego Maradona” about it.
Conor McNamara raved about Salah’s goal on BBC 5 Live (h/t Express):
“You don’t see that often. He goes around the goalkeeper twice, he’s calmness personified. It’s like one of those goals you’d see Maradona score in the 80s.
“It was the sort of flick you do if you’re playing with your nephews in the back garden or something ‘lets flick it passed you no problem’, he just sort of nonchalantly scored.”
Former Chelsea midfielder Steve Sidwell compared it to a classic goal scored by Ricky Villa for Tottenham, while McNamara claimed the goal was “outrageous” and showed just how confident Salah is of his abilities.
“You go around the goalkeeper and he’s thinking hang on a minute, I’ve done it once, I’ll do it again.”
The Egyptian is peaking into form at the right time, which is perfect for us as we look to make it to the next round of the Champions League.
The Reds face Napoli at Anfield on Tuesday, where we need a 1-0 win or a two-goal difference win (if the Italians score).
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