Liverpool signed Fábio Henrique Taveres ‘Fabinho’ on the 28th of May 2018 for a fee of £39 million, an amazing coup by the Reds. The then 24-year-old had been scouted by many top clubs across Europe, but Jürgen worked his magic again and we got him across the line. He arrived by private jet with his wife Rebecca Tavares to complete his deal.
Klopp was elated by the signing as this was a player whom he wanted so badly.
“We have signed a fantastic player, but someone who is an equally fantastic person I think,”
“His reputation as a character in the dressing room and his attitude in training has come through from everyone we speak to. He has a lovely family also – adding a person like this to our dressing room only makes us even stronger. What we have – in terms of our environment at Melwood and in the team – means anyone coming in must be of that build. They must be the highest quality person and player.”
“He has ability and mentality to play at the highest level in a number of positions. He can play ‘6′, ‘8’ and ‘2′, this is cool. He is tactically very strong and football smart. I think he improves our squad and there aren’t that many players you can say that about in this moment, because the quality we have already is so high.”
“I like that he is young yet experienced also, with a high number of games at a club that compete to win. Also, international caps for Brazil tells you something about him. This signing gives us new opportunities and for that I am excited. I’m sure our supporters will make him very welcome and at home at our wonderful club and in our amazing city.”
Thing’s haven’t gone according to plan for the Brazilian Maestro
He wasn’t going to be rushed straight into the starting line-up as the gaffer likes to get his players up to speed on his tactics. Just like the previous season with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Fabinho was given plenty of time to settle down. Jürgen had done this on many more occasions too, Ilkay Gündoğan (while at Borussia Dortmund) needed more or less half a year to settle-in, and look how that turned out. Andy Robertson last season is another example; it’s not easy to get used to our ‘Gegenpressen’ style.
The first few matches this season Fabinho didn’t even make the bench.
He eventually made his competitive debut in the Carabao Cup in our 2-1 defeat to Chelsea. He then made his Champion’s League debut against Napoli coming on in the second half, a game we went on to lose by 1-0. He’s been an ever-present in the Brazilian setup, which is a positive for Liverpool as it’s keeping him up to speed and match fit. They’re utilizing him in a right-back a position in which he’s played on many occasions before.
His league debut for Liverpool came in the match against Huddersfield just after the international break. He came on in the second half to steady the ship, and we got a glimpse of the player we had bought as his presence helped us get away from the John Smith’s Stadium with all three points.
Next up was his Anfield debut against Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League.
Jürgen decided to give him a birthday present and play him in his “favourite system” 4-2-3-1. A “double-six” is what Fabinho was used to at Monaco, and he thrives in that formation. He made an astounding nine tackles and had a brilliant debut at Anfield. If it wasn’t for Shaqiri’s brilliance he would’ve been the Man of the Match.
Klopp said after the game:
“The present for his birthday was not that he was in the starting line-up, it was that we played his favourite system with a double six (two holding midfielders).”
“He played really well. It was good to see. Very aggressive – everything was there. For the first game in a while, his second game from the beginning, it was good. It was quite impressive what people saw tonight. It always helps a player to play a good game, and that helped us tonight and helped him. That was the start, let’s carry on.”
Today’s game at home to Cardiff will hopefully bring Fabinho his first Anfield Premier League start in the Red shirt. I think it’ll be an unchanged team for our match, baring any injuries in the past few days. I think Cardiff will try and make it tough for us today, but with little or no success.
I’m going to go with a comfortable 4-0 victory to us, same as Wednesday’s game, with Salah, Mane, Firmino and Fabinho to score the goals.