Former Liverpool midfielder Dietmar Hamann has little doubt Roberto Firmino will become a key figure at Anfield.
The Brazil international has struggled for consistency since his big-money off-season move from Hoffenheim, but impressed in Liverpool’s 4-1 win over Manchester City last weekend.
Perhaps counting in Firmino’s favour is the fact former Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp, familiar with the 24-year-old from their time in the Bundesliga, is now in charge of Liverpool following the sacking of Brendan Rodgers in October.
Hamann is confident Firmino’s performance at the Etihad Stadium was not a one-off and expects more of the same during the remainder of the season.
“He’s a very talented player. I spoke to people who worked with him – Markus Babbel was his coach at Hoffenheim – and I saw an awful lot,” Hamann told the official Liverpool website.
“He is very direct, he is a little bit different to [Philippe] Coutinho, that’s why he can also play that role as a false nine or a centre-forward.
“He’s got tremendous ability and, coupled with the mental strength he’s got, I think he could be a great asset for the club for a long time to come.
“Sometimes when Brazilians or South Americans come to the Premier League people ask if they can cope with the physical demands but I think he is more German or European than South American, mentally.
“He never shirked a challenge in Germany, he was always one of the first ones to go where it hurts, and I think he has shown that in his few games for the club.”
Firmino has netted once in 10 Premier League appearances so far this campaign.