Jamie Carragher is concerned that Liverpool could get “caught short” if Jurgen Klopp sanctioned the sale of Roberto Firmino this summer.
The Brazil international has been linked with a move to Juventus this summer with reports claiming the Serie A giants have made a £19m bid.
Juventus’ plan is to give him a greater role in their team with Mo Salah, Luis Diaz, Diogo Jota and Darwin Nunez ahead of him in the pecking order at Liverpool.
Reports have insisted that regular football would appeal to Firmino in a World Cup year with his time on the pitch under Klopp reduced last season.
However, Firmino started in their 3-1 Community Shield victory over Manchester City on Saturday and Klopp made it clear last week that he remains a key part of his side.
“Bobby is crucial for us, the heart and soul of this team, the way we played in the last years was only possible because of Bobby,” Klopp said.
“That’s why I’m really happy he was able to train for the majority of the time here in pre-season so far. Everything looks really good so I am absolutely fine. There is no doubt about Bobby’s quality. All the rest we will see how this year goes but he is essential for us.”
Firmino revealed his thoughts on his future yesterday, he said: “I love this team, this city and the fans. I’m here. I want to stay, of course.”
And Carragher doesn’t think Firmino will leave as they need cover for their forward line despite the signings of Fabio Carvalho and Nunez.
Carragher told Football Daily: “I don’t think it’s a risk losing him for nothing. I have felt for a couple of years now that Firmino would see this contract out and move on for nothing.
“I think getting £19m or keeping Firmino next season, I would probably keep him. The situation Liverpool find themselves in, they don’t want to be caught short.
“I think Firmino will have a big role. Listen, Nunez might take time to settle and he is playing in the Premier League. And that’s not just about his ability, it’s about coming to a different league.
“So, I think Firmino could be really important this season and I think he might actually start the first few games of the season and I can imagine Nunez coming off the bench.’
“I am not quite sure about the Juventus links. Obviously, we have spent a lot of money on a striker and Juventus play a 4-3-3, if I am not mistaken, so I couldn’t see Firmino playing wide or going there to be an understudy.
“The links may be true, I don’t know, but I would keep him.”