Roberto Firmino, who was heavily linked with a move to Manchester United before signing for Liverpool FC, has revealed that he chose Reds because of the recommendation of Brazil team-mate Coutinho and the presence of another Brazilian Lucas Leiva in the squad.
The Brazil international sealed his move to the Merseyside giants in a a 40 million move, a deal that is being hailed as a coup given the player was heavily linked to Manchester United.
The Times reported the story that Liverpool FC had joined Manchester United in the race for Firmino. Days before the move, the paper was quoted saying:
Liverpool are considering a move for Roberto Firmino, the Brazil midfielder, as they continue to prepare for the increasing likelihood that Raheem Sterling will join Manchester City this summer.
Firmino, an attacking player who is also admired by Manchester United, is set to move to the Barclays Premier League, according to Roger Wittmann, his agent, and having watched Firmino repeatedly last season, Liverpool are deliberating over whether to harden their interest in him.
Firmino reveals Coutinho’s role in signing for Liverpool
Speaking about signing for Liverpool FC, Firmino revealed that Coutinho had spoken to him about what he could expect at Anfield. He was quoted saying by Liverpool Echo:
a He [Coutinho] said ita s a great club with a great squad and a great spirit so Ia m really happy to be here.Now I know for myself that the team spirit is really good, because the players gave me a really warm welcome.a
Firmino also went onto add that the club must be fighting for a place in the Champions League.
a Obviously Liverpool is a great club and as a great club Liverpool has to be fighting for big things,a said Firmino.
a We have to be at the top so we will be fighting for a Champions League spot for next year and hoping to finish as high as we can in the Premier League.a
Firmino reveals Brazil contingent at Anfield was a key factor in signing
Firmino said that the presence of familiar faces in countrymen Lucas Levia and Coutinho played a key role in his decision to come at Anfield.
a I first knew about it (Liverpool interest) a few months earlier and I instantly thought it would be an interesting idea for me because I knew Lucas and Coutinho were playing here.
a I had the chance to play alongside Philippe for the national team so, yes, I knew it would be a great opportunity for me straight away,
a Ia m very happy to be here.a