Roberto Firmino is the best Brazilian to ever grace the Premier League and may well be a better player than Dennis Bergkamp and Eric Cantona.
That is the verdict of talkSPORT host Adam Catterall, who has stressed just how important the 28-year-old is to Jurgen Klopp’s side and the success they are having right now.
His comments come amid claims Bayern Munich are considering a £75million move for the forward in the summer.
Speaking earlier this week, former Liverpool star Dannt Murphy suggested Firmino is replaceable and picked out one player who would make their attack ‘more scary’ – Kylian Mbappe.
But talkSPORT host Catterall has argued the opposite and regards Firmino as among the great Premier League players.
“This guy is the best Brazilian to grace us in the Premier League,” he declared on the Drive show.
“No question about it, he is absolutely outrageously good.
“In this front three for Liverpool, don’t get me wrong they have some wonderful players, I think Sadio Mane is exceptional at this moment in time, Salah has been exceptional – I think he has dipped a touch, but Firmino is the glue that keeps it all together.
“He is the most important in that front three. I think the other two are replaceable.
“Don’t get me wrong, Liverpool don’t want to replace them and neither should they.
“Firmino is irreplaceable. There’s not another player on the planet right now that can do what he does. He’s that good.”
Former Premier League striker Darren Bent couldn’t resist bringing up a comment Catterall made off air he made about just how good Firmino is.
Bent said: “You’ve just said off air about him being better Dennis Bergkamp and Eric Cantona.”
Catterall said: “He’s better than both of them.”
Bent replied: “Honestly?”
Catterall added: “Look at you right, you’ve seen the bus and you are throwing me right underneath it.
“Bergkamp was exceptional. Eric Cantona, I think I’ve been on the record in the past saying he’s one of the most important players that ever graced the Premier League. But their importance on their sides at their particular times at Arsenal and Manchester United respectively, Firmino is that for Liverpool. That’s how important he is.
“Liverpool fans will tell me Van Dijk is the most important player and you can probably go along with that but as an attacking force, just the way that he is so aware of where he is on the pitch and where he is and where his teammates are, and he can find them and he can score. He’s just unbelievable that lad.”
So how does Firmino’s stats stack up against Bergkamp and Cantona?
Firmino has 56 Premier League goals in 162 appearances, roughly one goal every three games, while also adding 34 assists.
The Brazilian has been involved in a goal 0.55 times per game on average while at Liverpool.
Bergkamp was far from prolific with 87 goals in 315 appearances but provided an incredible 94 assists, which is slightly better than Firmino’s goal involvement at 0.57 per game.
Frenchman Cantona played 156 matches and scored 70 goals while also adding 56 assists. The former United and Leeds forward was involved in 126 goals during his time in the Premier League, which averages out at 0.8 per game.
It is a bold claim by Adam Catterall to compare Firmino to two Premier League legends like Bergkamp and Cantona and lets not forget the combined seven titles they won between them.
Liverpool are working on their first league title in 30 years and the Brazilian may have to enjoy sustained success at Anfield to be mentioned in the same breath as the other two.
Roberto Firmino is the best Brazilian to ever grace the Premier League and may well be a better player than Dennis Bergkamp and Eric Cantona. That is the verdict of talkSPORT host Adam Catterall, who has stressed just how important the 28-year-old is to Jurgen Klopp’s side and the success they are having right now. […]