Jürgen Klopp will be eternally grateful to Roberto Firmino for the defining influence the Brazilian had on his Liverpool reign.
Following a glorious eight-year stay, Firmino departs Anfield this summer a club legend after playing a key role in the collection of six major trophies.
His critical importance to the many feats achieved under Klopp is underlined by the fact that he leaves having made the most appearances – 355 – of any player during the manager’s time in charge.
A goal in his 362nd and final game for Liverpool – last Sunday’s season-ending 4-4 draw with Southampton – took Firmino into outright 16th place on the club’s all-time leading scorers list with 111 goals.
During the upcoming LFC Original documentary Bobby, Klopp is asked to sum up Firmino’s legacy at Anfield and says: “He is so integral for everything what happened here in my time. I think he is still the player who started most games even when recently he didn’t start that often.
“It’s just that I couldn’t imagine for a long, long time how our game would look without him. So, we had to find ways when he was not available and we came through these spells: Sadio [Mane] last year, for example, did exceptional, did that really well.
“But yes, as a person, as a human, as a boy, I will miss him. As a player we all will miss him, but anyway I think it’s the right way to part ways: very respectful, with tears in our eyes and with the knowledge that we will definitely miss each other because it will be the other way around the same.
“But we are professional football people and we have to part ways from time to time, it’s a completely normal thing. So, we will stay friends forever definitely, I will be grateful forever for everything he did for us, for me, and he will go down as one of the Liverpool greats.
“What can you wish more for in a footballer’s life than that?”