Philippe Coutinho transfer could solve Liverpool’s dilemma but Jurgen Klopp must avoid desperate bet – Theo Squires – .

Philippe Coutinho transfer could solve Liverpool’s dilemma but Jurgen Klopp must avoid desperate bet – Theo Squires – .

Philippe Coutinho continues to be the subject of debate when it comes to Liverpool’s fan base.
On the one hand, there are the fans who yearn to find him at Anfield, wishing that Jurgen Klopp would save the Brazilian from his Barcelona nightmare and rediscover the playmaker who terrorized the Premier League defenses every week.

On the other, fans who believe he built his bed at Camp Nou and should lie there, with the 29-year-old now just a pale imitation of the player who left Merseyside in January 2018 and Liverpool much more. side than the one he left behind.

With less than three weeks in the summer transfer window and two years on Coutinho’s contract, Barcelona remain desperate to offload the midfielder along with a number of other big names with Lionel Messi’s shock start to Paris Saint -Germain not enough to resolve their financial struggles.

Since leaving Liverpool, he has won two La Liga titles and two Copa Del Rey in Spain, as well as a Bundesliga title, the Champions League and DFB-Pokal thanks to a one-year loan from Bayern Munich.

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But he has rarely reproduced his Anfield form, with Barcelona trying and failing to sell him over the past two seasons and Bayern deciding not to sign him for good after a inconsistent year in Germany.

Coutinho has often been linked with a return to the Premier League with the Reds, one of the many teams credited as potential contenders in the past, along with Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Leicester City and Everton.

But no such decision has been made, although his price has been steadily dropping since signing for Barcelona in the record-breaking £ 142million deal, reports earlier this summer suggesting he could even be available for as little as £ 20million.

Liverpool will inevitably continue to be linked with a move for their former player, as they have ever since sold him to Barcelona in the first place, with such speculation arguably exacerbated by their lack of transfer activity compared to their rivals from the title so far.

The Reds quickly signed Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig in a £ 36million deal in May, but have since prioritized offloading players to raise money and make room for their squad.

By contrast, they saw Man City spend a record £ 100million in the Premier League on Jack Grealish and continue to show interest in Harry Kane, Chelsea re-signing Romelu Lukaku for £ 97.5million and Manchester United bring Jadon Sancho for £ 73million and Raphael Varane for an initial £ 34million.

Klopp recently admitted he may not be done in the transfer market yet, but admitted Liverpool will have to offload more players before they can strengthen their hand.

“I’m very happy with the team, but that doesn’t mean we don’t watch the market,” he said after his side’s 1-1 draw against Athletic Bilbao on Sunday.

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“But as long as nothing happens, I’m more than happy with the team I have. I am more than satisfied with the players I have.

“We have so much that you can’t sign. You can’t sign our counterpress, you can’t sign our atmosphere that we’re creating in the stadium, you can’t sign Anfield, you can’t sign our anthem.

“You can’t sign a lot of things and that’s what we have to use. There are obviously other approaches, and we have influence on that. Our situation is as it is.

“We have a great squad and there may be something going on until the end of the transfer window, but I can’t comment on that at the moment. “

Meanwhile, he has since told Norwegian TV: “If you want to buy such players, you have to spend a lot of money. We don’t have to, because the players are already there.

“You have to make changes every now and then, but then there has to be room to do it. We don’t want more players. If something happens somewhere, something can happen elsewhere, but it doesn’t make sense to add more players.

Although the Liverpool squad are already well supplied, some sections still believe they need to strengthen their midfield and attack, not only because of their rivals’ transfers but after seeing Gini Wijnaldum leave for Paris Saint -Germain in free transfer. and with Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Naby Keita, all set to leave for the Africa Cup of Nations in January.

And with limited funds and space, Coutinho may turn out to be an attractive fix for the Reds.

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After all, he’s capable of playing both in midfield and in the top three, knows Klopp’s side well and would be a capable alternative in the absence of the African trio and Wijnaldum.

Meanwhile, with Barcelona in such dire financial straits, his reduced fees or even the possibility of signing him on a loan could present him as a familiar budget solution.

And it’s not as if Klopp wanted Coutinho to leave in January 2018, despite using the funds raised to sign Virgil van Dijk and Alisson, having fought to retain his services six months previously.

In May 2017, Klopp advised Coutinho, “Stay here and they will eventually build a statue in your honor.

“Go elsewhere, to Barcelona, ​​to Bayern Munich, to Real Madrid, and you will be just another player. Here you can be something more.

After going to Barcelona and Bayern Munich, Coutinho has indeed found himself to be just another player.

Perhaps a return to Anfield could see him belatedly become something more.

Still, if Liverpool are serious about moving for their ex-Brazilian in the next three weeks, that would be a sign that their transfer window has not gone as planned.

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The Reds have grown steadily since his departure, thriving in his absence on the path to Premier League and Champions League success.

Meanwhile, their transfer activity is as well thought out as ever, with players being watched and lists of potential targets made months in advance.

Liverpool have had the opportunity to re-sign Coutinho in the past and have resisted. Any decision now to bring back a player who hasn’t played in 2021 due to injury would really send the wrong message.

He could fill in the Reds’ loopholes, be available at a good price and be a familiar fix, but his fate since leaving Anfield ensures that it is still a bet and no guarantee to return to his former heights.

And if this is a bet Liverpool end up attempting to make, it only demonstrates a desperate and reactionary move late in the window, in response to their rivals failing to hit their prime targets.

Now signing players who weren’t necessarily the Reds’ top pick in the past has already worked, with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane two of the most famous examples.

But they were both long-term targets with their best days ahead rather than a tough last roll of the dice.

While a move for Coutinho might make more and more sense on paper as the transfer deadline draws near, it’s still a desperate bet Liverpool simply can’t afford to make.


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