14 Jun 2014

Next Signing? Ayre flies out to sign 'irreplaceable' £20m Brazilian genius. Shaqiri/Lallana deals dead?

In March and April, Liverpool were heavily linked with a summer move for Hoffenheim star Roberto Firmino, and with the proposed deal for Adam Lallana seemingly on the rocks, the Reds have stepped-up their efforts to sign the exciting Brazilian attacker.

In March, reports claimed that Liverpool were considering a €14m summer bid for 22-year old Firmino, who is allegedly one of Brendan Rodgers' top targets.

Soon after, German newspaper Bild revealed that Liverpool scouts watched Firmino in Hoffenheim's 6-2 victory against Wolfsburg, a game in which he scored.

Today, reports in Germany claim that:

* Liverpool are set to 'open talks' with Hoffenheim.
* Ian Ayre is flying to Germany next week to try and secure the deal.
* The Reds are prepared to pay £20m to seal the transfer.

Despite an amazing season for Hoffenheim, Firmino - like Coutinho - missed out on a place in Brazil's World Cup squad. His stats for the year are very impressive:

* 22 goals/15 assists in 37 games.
* Overall: 37 goals/assist in 37 games.
* Goal every 1.6 games.
* Goal/Assist every 1 game
* League Only: Goal/Assist every 94 mins.

37 goals/assists? That's a brilliant, Suarez-esque achievement in one of Europe's best leagues, so it's no surprise that Rodgers is interested.

When asked recently about the interest of 'top clubs', Hoffenheim manager Markus Gisdol told SportBild:

"Roberto is currently in excellent form. He fits the way we like to play football, but he has a contract here, so I'm not worried"

When pressed about how Hoffenheim would cope if Firmino left, Gisdol added:

"He is irreplaceable, and no club in the world can directly replace their best players when they leave"

Gisdol was pressed again about Firmino's future after the Wolfsburg thrashing, and when asked if Brazilian's departure is inevitable, he told reporters:

"Not at all. Of course we know how the transfer market works, but players who have proven themselves and fit well into our system, we basically want to keep here."

In 2012-13, Firmino managed only 5 goals and 2 assists, so it's possible he played out of his skin last season in a bid to make the Brazil squad. The upswing in end product is significant, and the question is, will Firmino be able to maintain this kind of record for Liverpool, or will he ease off as there's no longer a World Cup on the horizon?

If LFC are going to spend £20m on an attacking player, then it should be on someone with (IMO) incredible creative stats, but there's a strong possibility that Firmino could end up being a one-season wonder. After all, in the two two seasons prior to this one, the Brazilian managed only 12 goals and 5 assists in 67 appearances.

Firmino's creative creative return is stunning, but given his history, £20m still seems a little high. Having said that, Chelsea are also hovering around, and if the Reds don't pay the right price, it could be Willian/Salah all over again.

If Firmino wants to break into the Brazil squad, though, going to Chelsea is not going to help that happen. He'll just end up nailed to the bench like Salah. At Liverpool, he'll have much more chance of playing regularly.



  1. How old is he?

  2. Jamie K. quick question. Of all your years of finding reports that aren't in the mainstream, which transfer "scoops" are you most proud of unearthing?

  3. He;s 22. A very good player. Would love to see him in a Liverpool shirt

  4. Cool 22, sounds alright.

  5. problem is he is not a player who can play wing
    coutinho is quite useless out wide and tops down the middle
    so we need someone comfortable through middle or on the left and also works very hard like lallana

  6. did anyone ( less well known ) from the holland team impress anyone particularly ?

    i really liked bruno indi,de vrij and blind
    we were linked with de vridj before janmaat was alright as well

    i would sign all 4 of them and that would sort out our defense

  7. I really hope that players will finally acknowledge that moving to Chelsea is career suicide for developing players. Great if you are a bus driver but a waste of talent if you are an attacker

  8. My number 1 transfer target & worth shelling out 20m or more to sign. He'll be worth way more than that once he gets to perfom for a big team on a big stage & he's not being watched by Barca & Real for nothing so if it turns out that LFC bid for & sign him i'll be over the moon! A proper gem of a player & he'd elevate our attack to a whole other level. He can actually play left & right but he's by far best playing more central, the link up with the SSS & Coudini would be incredible & we'd add another 20 goals & assists to our midfield easy! I pray this is true & LFC don't quibble over the price or his wages. SIGN HIM UP!!

    Have to ask you all though, how do you feel about, seemingly missing out on Rakitic to Barca for a rumoured €20m without even a bid from LFC cos i for one am rather miffed!!?!!??

  9. Blind was fantastic last night against the spanish armada he's a left back who can also play def midfield isn't he a Rodgers type of player a good all round player who can play in multiple positions.

  10. Nicolas Chamberlain3:00 pm, June 14, 2014

    Maybe Janmaat, but Blind and de Vrij are still not good enough for LFC. I'm part Dutch and I think we will have to wait how these youngsters are developing, but I can totally understand that after last night the big European clubs will be interested.

  11. Nicolas Chamberlain3:02 pm, June 14, 2014

    Rakitic was never going to joins us and he had only 1 year left on his deal.

  12. i wont be shelling out 25 m for a simple hard working player

  13. I wouldn't say that Willian was a case of Liverpool and Chelsea. Liverpool had him, Spurs swiped him from us, Willian had a Spurs medical, and then Chelsea came in and hijacked the Spurs' deal.

  14. Thats what I was thinking. While the other guys we've been linked with (Shaqiri, Lallana, even Kono) all play AM and Wing quite comfortably. I'm not saying Firminonis a bad target, but we need a winger more than an AM right now.

  15. Nicolas Chamberlain3:08 pm, June 14, 2014

    He lacks pace and struggles with high pressuring opponents. The Spanish Armada was lazy and without any penetration last night. Blind is a talented player but he should stay at Ajax and gain more experience.

  16. Is JK going for Italy or Pirlo?

  17. what a player

  18. Perhaps his upswing is due to age and him just progressing. I don't know much about the lad at all but will welcome any player bought.

  19. YOU wont be shelling out a penny

  20. Seemingly hard to resist a move that have been successful in the last few years and are willing to pay silly money.

  21. Title'scominghome4:03 pm, June 14, 2014

    This kid is so like Coutinho it's ridiculous, I have seen him play numerous times this year and he is probably more consistent than Coutinho... Both great players, could they work together? who knows...chances are they wouldn't play at the same time because they'd leave us exposed at the back, we'd need Hendo to compliment either.....
    I was under the impression though that he pledged his alligence to Hoffenhiem towards the end of last season, I also thought he signed a new contract....????

  22. Title'scominghome4:07 pm, June 14, 2014

    eerrrrrrr! who said you could steal my name......
    Do youfind me attractive, do you fancy me? because you seem to be F###kin me.......... eeerrrrrr!

  23. whats wrong buddy? how can anyone steal ur name? btw if i were you i would change thy name

  24. Am not over the moon with Rakitic. Shaqiri and Firmino and I don't who else we get! Lallana is over priced and he could be alone season wonder. The year before his stats were not that great.

  25. Go make more research about firmino plss,he used to play on the wings.

  26. I am sure the Daily Star will oblige.

  27. He turned up late for training a few times, (turning up late for work in germany is like a crime), he was demoted to training with the youths, he could not get to grips with learning German etc, but he has put all that behind him, and has improved immensely. He could be the business, I would prefer him to Lallana, who IMO is no better than Yossi Benayoun, but very similar in style.

  28. Agree to disagree. I think he is much better than that. But thanks for the Firminio info.

  29. A few people are asking for wingers? I don't know what they've been watching, because we don't play with wingers anyway! We have 3 midfielders and 3 attackers( 2 wing forwards). Wing forwards are not wingers. Sanchez Pedro konoplyanka Hulk etc are wing forwards. Wingers are like navas Milner etc
    Firmino would be a quality signing, judging by his impressive stats from last season. If we play the diamond formation, he'd be great competition to sterling and coutinho.

  30. Firmino is one of my favourite Bundesliga players, I would shoot my juice if we signed him.. Incredibly creative in a very exciting team!

  31. ATTACK: 2014/2015
    Sturridge Suarez Sanchez
    Shaqiri Lambert Sterling
    Ibe Borini


    Allen Henderson
    Can Rossiter


    Moreno Sahko Lovren Aurier
    Enriqué Agger Skrtel Flanagan

    Sell: Aspas, Alberto, Toure, Reina, Johnson, Jones, Robinson, Coady,

    DREAMS COME TRUE! PLZ make this squad come true!

  32. I'm sorry but gerrard and lucas play cdm, both Henderson and Allen are poor finishers, making coutinho and occasionally Sterling the only AM's. So explain to me how AM is not a priorty?

  33. Firmino is the man!
    Hope Liverpool sign him - hell of an exciting player!!

  34. I am pissed off we didn't sign Rakitic. The price was affordable given what he allegedly signed for........I hope this guy is a reasonable facsimile .....................

  35. Jaimie, the bloke is only 22. He wasn't going to score goals and assists every game from his debut, so he eventually had to have a breakout year one year, did he? And that's this year. It's definitely no fluke.

  36. It may be that the club think it can get Firmino and Shaquiri for not much more than southampton are asking for Lallana

  37. If the club spent this kind of money the assumption would be that it was Firmino's "breakout" season just past and his form will only continue to improve. Given that he was 20 and 21 in those previous two seasons it's not unreasonable to imagine that he was building up to his full potential. Sure, it would be nice to have another season of world beating stats under his belt but if that happened he'd be suddenly worth 40 million and chased by Barcelona, Bayern, City and Real. To get a player performing at that level in the Bundesliga and available for that price is an opportunity we shouldn't let slip. So unless there is some notable problems with his game/style/attitude I think the price is a bargain. If we're willing to pay up to 25 for Lallana then we should offer the same or more for Firmino who has better stats and is younger. This is what is being paid for players these days and, like you say, those creative stats are unquestionably top drawer.

  38. Firmino signed a new contract with Hoffenheim due to the fact that there was plenty of interest in their player. That contract most probably contains clauses in to see Hoffenheim earn a massive pay day.

    Can't see it happening.

  39. But I hope the odds of getting this kid are at least firmino...

  40. When a player is only 22, his stats from two seasons ago mean little so it doesn't bother me that his stats weren't so great as he is improving. He CAN play on the wing if we need him too but I prefer specialists out there to be fair. Firmino would be a very exciting addition to this exciting squad BR is building. Let's wait and see.