Roberto Firmino – More than Just a Goalscorer

by Pranav Mohan · Soccer

Introduction and Shot Analysis

The Brazilian Maestro, Roberto Firmino, has started off the 2022-23 season on a very strong note. He has scored eight goals at a rate of 1.11 goals per 90 and also provided four assists at a rate of 0.56 per 90. The shot map below shows all the shots taken by the 31-year-old this season in the Premier League and the Champions League.

Firmino 2022-23 Shot Locations

Some key takeaways from the above map:

  1. Firmino is averaging 0.47 expected goals per 90.
  2. He has a shot conversion rate of 34.7-percent, while the league average is only 14-percent.
  3. Most of the shots are high xG (quality) shots, and about 87-percent of these shots are from inside the box.

Passing and Pressing

There is no doubt that Bobby has been a massive threat in front of goal this season, but other components of his game have gone under the radar. He is still among the best in the league at passing and pressing. Ever since his arrival in the Premier League, very few forwards have come close to Firmino when it comes to pressing.

A small sample size warning before we look at his pressing and passing numbers.

As can be seen in the above image, Firmino belongs in the 99th percentile for Successful Pressure % and Successful Pressures. Both efficiency-wise and volume-wise, he is one of the best-pressing strikers in the league. He has a pressing success rate of 38.3-percent, while the league average (among forwards) is 28.8-percent.

It is also very difficult to find a forward who is good at pressing in all three parts of the pitch. Roberto Firmino provides that.

The Brazilian has provided three assists in the Premier League till now, at a rate of 0.58 per 90, which puts him in the 99th percentile for assists per 90 among forwards in the league.

But if we look deeper into his passing statistics, they are even more impressive.

He makes 4.44 progressive passes per 90, which is the highest in the league. Among forwards that have played more than 450 minutes, only Harry Kane (4.07) comes close to him. The league average is 1.56 per 90.

He has been excellent at penetrating both the final third and the penalty box with his passing.


Now that we have looked at some of the important statistics, it is time to look at his overall profile based on smarterscout ratings.

The above graph is divided into four sections: Attacking, Passing, Defending, and Aerial Ability.

While Firmino has not been good at dribbling this season, he has been great at retaining the ball. His ball retention was always one of his best qualities. He can still retain the ball in tight spaces and has good composure when pressed by the opponents.

His link-up play has been great, and as mentioned in the last section, his progressive passing has been one of the best in the league.

He is one of the best at recovering the ball in the league with 6.76 recoveries per 90.

While an average striker in the Premier League wins 32.7-percent of their aerial duels, Roberto Firmino wins 47.8-percent.


Firmino’s battle against injuries and Diogo Jota’s consistent performances for the club had put a huge question mark on the future of the former at Liverpool. But Firmino’s start to the season has shown that the Brazilian is still good enough to do it at the highest level.

Should he be given a contract extension?

In my opinion, the club should renew his contract for another year and assess the situation based on his performance.