Alisson Says He Cried After Leaving Roma for Liverpool in the Summer

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2018

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 22: Alisson of Liverpool during the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Southampton FC at Anfield on September 22, 2018 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images)
James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson has said the decision to leave Roma to join the Reds this summer left him in tears. 

The Premier League side paid a then-world-record fee for a 'keeper to land the Brazil international ahead of the current campaign following on from an exceptional 2017-18 with the Serie A side.

Speaking ahead of Liverpool's UEFA Champions League meeting with Napoli on Wednesday, Alisson said the choice to leave the Italian capital was a hard one for him and his family, per Gazzetta dello Sport (h/t Glenn Price of ESPN FC):

"Leaving Rome was difficult. I cried a lot, together with my wife. It's only right that I'm honest about it: I made a professional decision; a step forward in my career and for Roma, who earned a huge sum.

"I decided with my head to move to Liverpool, but my heart was full of tears. I spent two special years in Rome. My daughter was born there, and I have a lot of friends there outside of football."

ROME, ITALY - MAY 02: Alisson Becker of AS Roma celebrates during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final Second Leg match between A.S. Roma and Liverpool at Stadio Olimpico on May 2, 2018 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

The goalkeeper added that he loved Rome itself and "many times I'd spend the night walking the city streets" to look at iconic pieces of architecture such as the Trevi fountain and the Colosseum.

The Brazilian enjoyed two seasons with Roma, having joined from Internacional in 2016. After spending his first term at the club as a back-up to Wojciech Szczesny, he established himself in the first team in the previous campaign. He's now rated as one of the best goalkeepers in the game.

While his introduction to English football has not been straightforward—an error in possession against Leicester from Alisson cost the Reds a goal against Leicester—already the Brazil star has made a big impression with the Anfield club.

In the 1-1 draw against Chelsea on Saturday he made some crucial stops to keep the Reds in the game. Former goalkeeper David Preece has been impressed with how he copes in one-on-one situations:

David Preece @davidpreece12

Class from Alisson. Premier League players will work it out sooner or later but in 1v1’s he waits until the opponent puts he’s head down and rushes them to change the picture when they might shoot down by his legs where GK’s are vulnerable.

The affinity Alisson has for Rome is no surprise, as he enjoyed an incredible previous term at the club, helping them make a run to the UEFA Champions League semi-finals, where they were eventually beaten by Liverpool.

Per WhoScored, based on last season's statistics, Liverpool have managed to secure a major upgrade between the sticks in the Brazilian:

WhoScored.com @WhoScored

Alisson vs Loris Karius A look at the Liverpool goalkeeper battle after they secured the services of Alisson on Thursday night Read @_WrightJosh's article on Liverpool now -- https://t.co/DpKwGm9roz https://t.co/WudQZe0F8D

The early signs are that Liverpool are ready to challenge for major prizes this term, with the draw at Chelsea the first time they've failed to win in the league this term. The Reds face Manchester City on Sunday in what promises to be a huge game, and given the attacking class of the champions, Alisson will surely be a busy man.

While Liverpool will face a hostile atmosphere at the San Paolo on Wednesday it's something the goalkeeper will be used to following his time in Italy. A positive result for the Reds, having beaten Paris Saint-Germain in their first group game, would put them well on the way to qualifying for the knockout stages.