“Really wish he could stay” – Alisson & Fabinho open up on Roberto Firmino’s upcoming exit

Alisson and Fabinho have spoken glowingly about their departing compatriot Roberto Firmino, calling on team-mates to fill the “void” that will be left behind.

Firmino will leave Anfield upon the expiry of his contract this summer, ending an incredible eight-year spell with the club in which he lifted every available trophy.

Two of his colleagues and friends, Alisson and Fabinho, have praised their fellow countryman’s contribution to the club and insisted that there will be big boots to fill when he leaves for pastures new.

In an emotional interview, Liverpool’s goalkeeper described Firmino as “a really good friend” while Fabinho spoke of the 31-year-old’s popularity around the club.

“Bobby is a really good friend of ours, someone as well with a massive importance for our team,” Alisson told Sky Sport‘s Vinny O’Connor.

“I really wish he could stay.”

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, May 14, 2022: Liverpool's (L-R) Roberto Firmino, goalkeeper Alisson Becker and Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' celebrate with the trophy after the FA Cup Final between Chelsea FC and Liverpool FC at Wembley Stadium. The game ended in a goal-less draw, Liverpool won 6-5 on penalties. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Fabinho was equally complimentary of his Brazilian team-mate, emphasising the importance of Firmino’s character and detailing how supportive he was when the midfielder first arrived on Merseyside.

He commented: “He is a really lovely guy everyone likes him in the club, he was really important for me and I think for Al as well, since I arrived he was one of the most important people.”

The pair will lose a close friend as well as a crucial part of the team when Firmino leaves at the end of the campaign, and he could be playing his football at Barcelona next season if reports in the Mail are to be believed.

Liverpool’s goalkeeper added that the rest of the squad will have to “step up” next season in order to make up for the loss the team will experience.

“I believe [with] their styles they are going to have to step up now to fill this void,” he explained.

“They needed to do that this season after Sadio left the club, you cannot ask the players to do the same as Sadio did. Sadio is one player and the others have different ways to play.”

Firmino’s involvement in Liverpool’s remaining seven fixtures remains uncertain after Jurgen Klopp revealed that the No. 9 had picked up a muscle problem that will keep him out of at least the next three games.

He will be hoping to return to full fitness in time to feature in Liverpool’s last home game on May 20 against Aston Villa, in what would be an emotional farewell at Anfield.