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'I flinched when I heard Liverpool's brutal fee for Firmino'

The club’s former defender Markus Babbel feels the Brazilian must help Brendan Rodgers and co win trophies.

Firmino has joined Liverpool in a deal understood to be €32.6 million up front
Firmino has joined Liverpool in a deal understood to be €32.6 million up front

LIVERPOOL’S TRANSFER FEE to land Roberto Firmino is “brutal” and puts the Brazilian under pressure to justify his price tag, according to the club’s former defender Markus Babbel.

The 23-year-old became Brendan Rodgers’s fifth summer signing on Wednesday in a deal understood to be €32.6 million up front, and which could rise to €39m.

Only Andy Carroll, an ill-fated €49 million move that reaped just six goals in 44 Premier League appearances, has cost Liverpool more and Babbel believes Firmino will be expected to hit the ground running.

“That [transfer fee] is brutal,” he told Bild. “When I heard that I flinched, because even for Liverpool that is not chicken feed.

“He is under a certain pressure with this weight on his shoulders. You have to win trophies. This is a major challenge for Roberto.”

However, Babbel believes that Firmino will prove to be a good signing for Liverpool.

“Firmino and Liverpool, that fits,” he added. “He is an atypical Brazilian, more German than many Germans. Roberto is disciplined, has enormous assertiveness.

“Roberto does not complain when he is fouled. He is not an actor, he stands up again. That is beneficial in England, because that is what English fans like to see.”

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