The one who was Bella
Been following this kid for a while now, but with how he's playing right now he has to have his own thread here.
He's a 19 year old Brazilian(what'd u think?:drunk attacking midfielder playing in Hoffenhiem, and was bought straight from the Seria B in Brazil for around 4 milion euros last January as an 18 year old.
His progress so far has been incredible - from not even being in the squad at first, to slowly being on the bench but not playing, then getting a few min as a sub here and there, and near the end of the season becoming a starter scoring 3 goals in the last 5 games of last season, all in less then 6 months.
He was called for the U-20 Brazilian team that won the WC, but Hoffenhiem did not allow him to go as they counted on him for this season, and so far it seems like they were spot on - Since the start of the season in 5 starts(out of 6 games) Firmino scored 4 goals and had 1 assist, being Hoffenheim's best and most influential player on the pitch, and one of the best players in the Bundesliga so far, young and old alike.
Anyways this kid is just so talented and versetile. His best position is again as the playmaker being that attacking midfielder behind a striker where he knows how to find himself space, how to use his body strength to shield the ball and get out of tight situations, recieve the ball with his back to goal, and just run a team - but due to his skills and ability he's very adaptable tactically and can play pretty much everywhere in the attacking or even central midfield or on the wings - and even in the striker position at times, especiely with the very fluid way Hoffenheim plays with lots of switching places and off the ball movement having him as more of a 2nd striker type.
Besides his "True number 10" ability as I like to call it, being super creative always looking to make that speciel play or pass to suprise the defence and just a joy to watch with the ball at his feet with his great close controll/technique, smart quick thinking, and also knowing how to controll the pace of the game slowing down or speeding up when needed - he also has a real knack for goals, and dare I say he is quite simply world class(I honestly don't think i'm exaggerating here) at making those off the ball runs forward behind the defence lines ala Cesc Fabregas from deeper positions making the defence look like fools as he enters the box all alone - and he's also very composed around the goal inside the box, and pretty deadly from 20-25 and even 30 meters if given space too.
What helps that goal scoring ability and makes him deadly is his shooting ability and technique, that especiely with his stronger right foot is just brilliant, and even though he seems pretty lazy and 'heavy' on the ball - his speed is very decisive. this kid is really really fast when he turns it on off the ball - possibly one of the fastest players in the Bundesliga at top speed imo.
Unlike most 'field general' type of players, besides controlling the game he also has an insane workrate and stamina and he covers so much ground helping pressure the defence on top of his offensive off the ball movement winning back the ball - for example in the game against Mainz he ran 12 KM, with 26 sprints during the game - and in his last Wolfsburg game he had 38(!) sprints during the game while running 12 KM again.. those numbers are simply insane, especiely for a 19 year old kid attacking midfielder.
He needs to get better at his distribution and accurasy in passing as he at times looses the ball too much - and also needs to be less selfish on the ball not falling inlove with his dribble (Although in Brazil in the games I saw he was much worst and made a drastic improovment so far) - but in general this kid is a complete package, and a guy that could really make it to the very top level in football, and one of Brazil's brightest promises imo.
Here's his first goal last week against Wolfsburg