Roberto Firmino new role confirmed as former Liverpool man makes drastic career switch

Former Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)

Former Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino has become a pastor of an evangelical church that he founded in Maceio, Brazil, alongside his wife Larissa Pereira.

According to Brazilian news outlet Globo, it took place on Sunday, June 30. In a statement on social media, Firmino and Pereira said: "Since our first encounter with Christ, a desire burned in our hearts. We want people to feel this love that reached us. Now we have another desire and responsibility: to become pastors on behalf of God."

This is not the first time Firmino has shared a religious message on social media. He was baptised in 2020, shortly after his wife. The baptism occurred in a swimming pool in Liverpool before he opened Manah Church in Maceio, the following year. "Jesus is love, there is no explanation. Just believe in him, just believe and feel the Holy Spirit," he said at the time of his baptism.

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Firmino left Liverpool last summer after eight years at the club. The 31-year-old scored 111 goals and added 75 assists in 362 appearances for the Reds, winning the Premier League, Champions League, Club World Cup, Carabao Cup and the FA Cup among several other major trophies.

However, he departed to join Saudi Pro League side Al-Ahli 12 months ago. Since moving to the Middle East, Firmino has not quite hit the desired level, having scored just nine times and grabbed seven assists in 34 matches. Al-Ahli finished third last season behind Al-Nassr and Al-Hilal.

Last November, Firmino opened up on his departure from Liverpool in his book detailing his lengthy spell at Anfield, 'Si Senor: My Liverpool Years'. He admitted that a late substitute appearance in a 2-0 victory over Wolves in March 2023 was the moment that "broke the camel's back" before swiftly informing Klopp of his decision.

"It wasn’t a war. It was just a difference in understanding about what I could offer to Liverpool," revealed Firmino in his book.

"I reflected a lot and realised that God’s plan was to take me somewhere else. The signs were all there since that conversation with Pastor Daniel in Maceio. I had been stubborn.

"God didn’t want me to stay in Liverpool, but I was insisting. I didn’t listen. But I couldn’t avoid it any more. It was time to accept. I decided it was time to seek another challenge for myself, another purpose. My time at Liverpool had come to an end.

"It had been a beautiful story that I wanted to finish the right way. We are very grateful for everything we experienced in England; all of our dreams, mine and my family’s, were fulfilled. We experienced the greatest joys and triumphs; it was all so intense. And we didn’t want to leave with any bitterness, anger or resentment."