Speaking on talkSPORT (transcripted by the Liverpool Echo), former Liverpool centre-forward Dean Saunders had urged Jurgen Klopp to drop his interest on bringing back Phillipe Coutinho from Barcelona this summer when he said, “Liverpool haven’t missed him. They lost one game all season and lost the league by one point when Man City won each of their last 14 games, so they didn’t bottle it.
“Positionally have they missed him? No. [Sadio] Mane, [Mohamed] Salah and [Roberto] Firmino are the front three, and [Divock] Origi and [Xherdan] Shaqiri have come in and done their bit.”
Even though Saunders made a good point by stating that Liverpool have not missed Coutinho’s presence, the fact remains that Klopp doesn’t have a gifted playmaker in his squad. Thus, bringing back Coutinho could add some much-needed creativity to the Reds midfield which could give them an edge in the Premier League title race next season.
Marca has now stated that the Brazilian winger is no longer a part of Barca boss Ernesto Valverde’s plans for the upcoming campaign. Hence, Liverpool might have an ideal opportunity to seal his return to Anfield if Klopp wants to add a quality playmaker to his squad this summer.
Coutinho’s Recent Struggles At The Nou Camp
The South American sensation had to endure a frustrating season at the Nou Camp in the previous campaign. However, the Rio de Janeiro born attacker still managed to score 11 goals and provide five assists in 54 matches for the Catalan giants in the last term across all competitions. The 27-year-old was also an integral member of the Brazil squad that won the Copa America earlier this month.
There is no doubt that Liverpool might have to pay a lot of money to bring Coutinho back to Merseyside. However, the jury is still out on whether he will be a good fit for Klopp’s brand of football at Anfield. The Brazilian international is one of the best playmakers in European football, but he tends to be lazy off the ball and has struggled to find consistency on the pitch last season.
Should Liverpool Listen To Saunders’ Advice?
Even then, the pros outweigh the cons so the Reds would be better off recruiting the Brazilian talent this summer but only if Barca are willing to let him go on the cheap. Otherwise, Klopp should just concentrate on other targets and give up on Coutinho for now.
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