Liverpool have been told they should not fear selling Roberto Firmino because they could become even stronger if Kylian Mbappe replaced him.
Former Reds midfielder Danny Murphy is a huge fan of Firmino, who has played a major role in the club’s success over the past two seasons.
Liverpool wisely invested in their squad strength after selling Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona for £142m two years ago.
And Murphy believes they could benefit from doing a similar thing and cashing in on his Brazilian compatriot to fund a massive deal for 21-year-old superstar Mbappe, who cost PSG £152m in 2018 after an initial loan spell in Paris.
“[Virgil] van Dijk is the most irreplaceable one,” Murphy said on talkSPORT. “Could you get in another striker for Liverpool who scores as many goals as Firmino? Yes.
“Would they make as many assists as Firmino and make the cohesion of the team so good? Maybe not, but there are players out there.
“Firmino is a beautiful complement for the Liverpool system and the way the two wingers play, and as a three they are tremendous with what they have achieved.
“No one is like Firmino; he’s quite exceptional and unique and he’s a wonderful player.
“But if he were to leave it would be a bit like when Kevin Keegan left and who was going to replace him… and Kenny Dalglish came in.
“Luis Suarez left and they got [Mohamed] Salah, [Sadio] Mane and Firmino. Firmino is well loved as Suarez was. [Ian] Rush left and [John] Aldridge came in and scored loads of goals.
“Football does move on if someone leaves. Is he replaceable? Yes. Anybody is, but it would change the dynamic.”
Mbappe is considered the heir apparent to Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo and has already scored 127 goals, despite his young age, and Murphy believes he would thrive further by moving to Anfield.
“If Liverpool were to lose Firmino and go and get [Kylian] Mbappe, would that be a more scary front three? Would he complement the other two as much?” Murphy asked.
“It is a debate and no one can give me a fact.
“I think if Mbappe was playing upfront with Mane and Salah, it would be more scary than playing with Firmino, Mane and Salah.
“I’m not belittling what Firmino has done, I think he’s a wonderful footballer.”
Meanwhile, Liverpool are keeping a close watch on Carlos Vinicius and are growing increasingly interested in signing the Benfica striker, according to reports in the Portuguese media.
Plans are already well underfoot for the summer transfer window at Anfield as Jurgen Klopp and Co plot for what we can all assume will be their Premier League title defence. Read more…