Tuesday 6 December 2016

Jurgen Klopp has high praise for Liverpool's Brazilian star Roberto Firmino

Carl Markham

Published 29/10/2015 | 07:41

Jurgen Klopp, manager of Liverpool hugs Roberto Firmino of Liverpool as he is substituted during the Capital One Cup Fourth Round match between Liverpool and AFC Bournemouth
Jurgen Klopp, manager of Liverpool hugs Roberto Firmino of Liverpool as he is substituted during the Capital One Cup Fourth Round match between Liverpool and AFC Bournemouth

Jurgen Klopp has no doubts about the quality of Roberto Firmino after the playmaker had his best game for the club to give his manager a first win as Liverpool boss.

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Defender Nathaniel Clyne may have made the decisive intervention in the 1-0 Capital Cup win over Bournemouth with his first goal since a summer move from Southampton but Firmino's influence was everywhere.

The Brazil international had a hand in the goal and was Liverpool's most threatening player as they booked a quarter-final tie at Southampton.

Klopp knows plenty about the £29million arrival from Hoffenheim having watched him many times as Borussia Dortmund boss and is pleased to see the 24-year-old starting to come into his own.

Roberto Firmino of Liverpool shoots
Roberto Firmino of Liverpool shoots

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"It is important for a new player when he comes to a club to show this but he does not have to show me because I know him very well," said Klopp.

"We know a little bit more about him, it was very intensive for him tonight.

"He is ready. He is prepared for this league, he is physically strong, a good technician and usually he is a good finisher. A good player."

Klopp made nine changes from the team which drew at home to Southampton on Sunday, retaining only Clyne and Divock Origi - and the latter was out of necessity as he had to protect front-line striker Christian Benteke's troublesome hamstring.

Benteke will be back for Saturday's trip to Chelsea but Klopp is still waiting to be able to select Daniel Sturridge for the first time as the England striker is still hampered by a knee injury.

Bournemouth’s Matt Ritchie battles it out with Cameron Brannagan
Bournemouth’s Matt Ritchie battles it out with Cameron Brannagan

"We have to talk about Daniel when he can train," he added.

"I don't know how much but four, five, six, seven, eight days is normal.

"It is not important how good you are, it is only important you have enough strength to play in this really intensive league.

"There is no pressure from me. I have to wait. If he is back then he has to train.

"Christian, I think, will be fit on Saturday. With our striker situation we can take absolutely no risk.

"Divock came on and worked really hard."

Despite the defeat, in which Junior Stanislas had the visitors' best three chances only to be denied by Adam Bogdan on every occasion, Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe insisted he was happy with his side's display.

"To perform in the manner we did is a positive," he said

"Harry Arter returning is a massive boost and players who have not played a lot of football didn't do their chances of game time a lot of harm.

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