Firmino eyes strong finish to Liverpool career, Klopp says
LIVERPOOL, England (AP) — Roberto Firmino plans to leave Liverpool after eight seasons but manager Jurgen Klopp says there will be time for goodbyes later.
The 31-year-old forward recently told Klopp that he'll move on after the season and that he's fully focused on the team's push for a strong finish.
“He is completely here and completely committed, how everybody can imagine. And that’s all we need to know,” Klopp said Friday in a press conference. “There’s no time for a goodbye or whatever in this moment, there’s enough time for that later in the season.”
Liverpool can bolster its top-four bid when it visits last-place Bournemouth on Saturday. The team has recorded four wins in its current five-game league unbeaten run and is up to fifth place, three points behind Tottenham.
Firmino capped off the scoring in the 7-0 rout of Manchester United at Anfield last Sunday.
“I loved the reception he got when he came on against United,” Klopp said.
The Brazil international has scored 108 goals in more than 350 appearances across all competitions for Liverpool and was part of a devastating trio of attackers with Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah. Mané left last summer to join Bayern Munich. Salah is Liverpool's leading scorer.
“Sadio, Bobby and Mo together were for quite a while one of the best front three in world football,” Klopp said.
Firmino helped Liverpool win the Champions League title in 2018-19 and the Premier League a season later.
The forward has had to compete for playing time with Liverpool's new crop of attackers including Cody Gakpo and Darwin Nunez.
Klopp said he was “a little bit” surprised at Firmino's decision but that it's “completely normal in this kind of long relationship that we have.”
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The Associated Press