Whelan hails 'brilliant Liverpool signing' amid 'world-class' reveal
Noel Whelan has hailed “clinical” Liverpool forward Diogo Jota as he continues to soften the blow of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane’s absences.
The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, claimed the 25-year-old’s strike rate sets him apart from Roberto Firmino.
Jota scored his 13th and 14th goals of the season as Liverpool set up a Wembley final against Chelsea by defeating Arsenal 2-0 in the League Cup semi-final second leg on Thursday (20 January).
Speaking post-match to Sky Sports, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp heaped praise on the “world-class striker”.
The German insisted he was always “completely convinced” his £41million move would be a success.
Whelan echoed the Reds boss and admitted the Portugal international’s arrival has been a “brilliant signing” for Liverpool.
Subscribe to Football Insider TV now
“Look, everyone was asking where the goals were going to come from when Mo Salah and Sadio Mane went away,” he told Football Insider‘s Russell Edge.
“He was scoring goals even when those two were there. He’s been a brilliant signing.
“Some people may have turned their nose up or raised their eyebrows when Liverpool paid £40million for him, but I think Jurgen Klopp saw a player who fit right into his system.
“He loves playing off the shoulder, can finish with both feet, very clever, and he’s so clinical – he can do everything and score all types of goals.
“I think that’s what separates him and Roberto Firmino – the goal ratio Jota produces.”
Firmino, 30, has managed just seven goals in all competitions for Liverpool this season.
Jota has scored 27 goals in 57 games since completing a move from Wolves in September 2020.
The Reds sit second in the Premier League, 11 points behind runaway leaders Man City.