Liverpool have completed the signing of Roberto Firmino, who will join from Hoffenheim for an initial transfer fee of £21.3million.
Having ran Manchester City close to the Premier League title in 2013/14, the Reds fell away badly last season and finished in sixth position. This was due in no small part to the sale of talisman Luis Suarez to Barcelona, yet other issues such as the lack of Daniel Sturridge’s fitness and a number of new signings failing to impress also had a detrimental impact on their campaign.
This even led to suggestions Brendan Rodgers could be shown the door ahead of next term, but it appears as though the former Swansea City boss still has the full backing of the board. Having brought in free transfers James Milner and Adam Bogdan, plus striker Danny Ings for a fee yet to be agreed, Joe Gomez joined from Charlton Athletic last week for a fee of £3.5million.
And now the Reds have confirmed the signing of Brazil international Firmino for an initial outlay of £21.3million, a fee which could rise to as much as £28million which would make him the second most expensive addition in the history of the club. It is understood the forward will sign a five-year deal upon completion of a medical, once he returns from Copa America action.
Firmino can play anywhere across the front three, and he has scored 48 times in 152 appearances since joining Hoffenheim for £3.5million in 2011. The 23-year-old was regarded as one of the most exciting and creative talents in the Bundesliga and his arrival at Anfield is sure to spark fresh speculation that Raheem Sterling will be sold in the coming weeks.
The England international has two years left on his contract at the Merseyside club, but has rejected all offers of a new deal and has made it clear he wants out this summer. Liverpool are holding out for a whopping £50million for the former Queens Park Rangers youngster, a fee they expect Manchester City to meet having failed with two bids for his signature already.