Flamengo hitman Gabriel Barbosa has expressed his admiration for the Brazilian compatriot Roberto Firmino, admitting he would like to move to the Premier League
The 23-year-old striker has enjoyed a stellar season at the Maracana Stadium, netting 43 goals in 56 outings since arriving from Inter Milan on a season-long loan.
‘Gabigol’ was the architect of Flamengo’s Copa Libertadores success, scoring two late goals to propel his side to the title against River Plate.
With his return to the Giuseppe Meazza looking highly unlikely, the Nerazzurri will be looking to cash in on their outcast with the ‘Mengão’ tipped to make his move permanent for £20million later this month.
Flamengo and Liverpool will both appear at the Club World Cup in December, and Barbosa will have the chance to meet his idol, Firmino.
Speaking of his admiration for the ex-TSG Hoffenheim forward, Barbosa has also revealed his desire to move to the Premier League one day, potentially to Liverpool in particular.
“Firmino is great. I really admire him. He’s been successful for many years in Europe,” the in-demand striker said, as reported by The Sun.
“He is a powerful forward, and he has been great for Brazil. He is an inspiration that I look up to.
“It would be a pleasure to play with him. Maybe we could team up for Brazil in the future, and Liverpool is a team that everyone wants to play for.
“But it’s hard to talk about this at the moment. My focus is totally on the Club World Cup.
“I like the Premier League very much. It combines technique, strength, and speed. I always follow the games from Brazil.
“It really is a place I would like to play. It’s one of the best leagues in the world.
“Every player dreams of being a champion, and winning the Premier League must be indescribable.
“But I still have a contract with Inter Milan and Flamengo until the end of 2019.
“We have a very important tournament ahead, and my whole focus is on it. I will think about the future after this competition.”