Liverpool talent emulating Thiago and Roberto Firmino after Jürgen Klopp call baffled teammates

Thiago Alcântara of Liverpool with Fábio Carvalho of Liverpool during the Liverpool pre-season training camp on July 23, 2022 in UNSPECIFIED, Austria.
A Liverpool youngster is looking to model his game on Thiago Alcântara and Roberto Firmino. -Credit:John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

You can count on one hand the number of people associated with Liverpool who might be pleased, on any level, that Jürgen Klopp is leaving. It hardly bears thinking about what the last near-decade might have looked like had the German not been appointed in 2015.

His era will always be best-remembered for that iconic front three of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mané. But while two of that trio have left now, Klopp is also leaving behind a hugely talented crop, having set 'Liverpool 2.0' on its way.

Certainly, the small army of youngsters given a chance by Klopp this season are likely to be among the saddest to see him go. While the likes of Jarell Quansah and Bobby Clark have not worked with him for all that long, they owe their professional breakthroughs to him, and will now need to impress a new manager — most likely Arne Slot.

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But not everyone has had a flawless experience under Klopp. Were he not leaving the club anyway, Thiago Alcântara might be looking forward to a fresh start, although his time at Liverpool has been blighted by injuries rather than any fault of the manager. Someone who arguably has a right to feel a little more aggrieved is Fábio Carvalho.

But speaking to the ECHO, he does not seem to harbor anything by way of ill will. Carvalho describes Klopp as 'one of the best managers' in the world, and admitted the chance to play under him was one of the factors in initially making the move to Liverpool.

However, he does concede that his period outside of the first team in his debut Anfield campaign was a difficult and somewhat confusing one. He recounts how even his teammates were left baffled:

“Yes, I spoke to [Klopp]. Spoke to him not a lot, if I’m being honest with you,” Carvalho admitted. “Maybe I should have done that, I have should have done that a bit more.

“But I did speak to him. He just said, ‘Be patient. You’re training well, your chance will come.’

“And I did think I was training well. To the point where some of the players were asking me, ‘What’s going on? Why are you not playing?’"

Carvalho was initially involved with the first team quite regularly, but his appearances had dropped off a cliff by the new year. To compound that, he had a similarly chastening experience on loan at RB Leipzig in the first part of this season, although he has found a new lease of life on loan at Hull.

The plan will be to get him back to Liverpool this summer, where he will have a chance to impress Slot. And Carvalho will be eager to get back into Reds training, having taken a lot from it previously:

“Going in every day, training under one of the best managers [Klopp] and training with the best players in the world. The best in training for me, like technically, was Firmino or Thiago," revealed Carvalho. "I kind of try to emulate my game on how they play.

“But one that stands out to me was Mo (Salah). Just the work ethic. He’s always looking to give me advice. Not just me but all the young players who want the advice.

“I feel like if you work hard, on the pitch or off the pitch, he values that and it goes a long way with him. He takes you under his wing and he’s helped me a lot.

“The same with Milly (James Milner), Milly helped me a lot as well. At the same time, he’s doing his coaching. He would give me a few pointers and do extras with me after training, so yeah, he’s helped me a lot.

“What else could you ask for? Even if I wasn’t playing much, I was still improving every day. And I got a few goals and did have a decent start.

“In a footballer’s career, there is always going to be highs and lows. I am looking to hopefully go back and get as many highs as possible.” says: Carvalho may need to get some new role models upon his return to Liverpool! Out of Firmino, Thiago, Milner and Salah, only the Egyptian will be left.

But that shows you just how much this team is evolving. And someone of Carvalho's talent can certainly still have a role to play in the next-generation Liverpool side. If he has taken aspects of Firmino and Thiago's games, he won't go too far wrong.