Efe Erciyaz explains why Phillipe Coutinho, the little Brazilian magician, has such a vital role at Liverpool Football Club.
Phillipe Coutinho – probably one of the most technically gifted players to ever wear the famous red. Many pundits and fans call him “overrated” or just do not appreciate his talent which leaves me shocked and appalled. In this article I will provide three reasons as to why Coutinho is pivotal to success at Liverpool.
Liverpool’s number 10 has a gift which is very rare and only a few players possess; his flair, dribbling ability and the ability to create space in critical moments with his passing is unmatched in our squad. Each and everyone of us remembers his superb dribble against Manchester United in the Europa League – going past several players with ease, making them look like Championship defenders on his way.
When most people talk about Coutinho´s strengths his ability to shoot from deep is what springs to mind, and other sides to his game, such as his passing and flair are mostly neglected, which is why I feel he is severely underrated. How many times over the past 2-3 seasons has Coutinho opened up the play and created opportunities with his flair and passing? Too many to count and without him, Liverpool’s offensive play would be crippled.
Another part of Coutinho’s game that has caught my eye, and therefore another reason why he is important to our club, is his ability to partner with other players and therefore increase the fluidity of our attack. This was especially seen in the second part of the season as Coutinho, Firmino and Sturridge were extremely effective between each other and offered some magical moments.
The game against Manchester City, on the 21st of November 2015, is where this almost magical bond started – they shared 3 goals between them and also had key roles in almost all the goals as well. If Liverpool can keep this strong partnership together I predict a bright future for our beloved club.
“Big players decide big games” – a common saying in world football nowadays, and furthermore for me a saying that fits perfectly to the playing style of the Brazilian.
Coutinho comes up in big moments for the club, be it last minute winners against Stoke City, or his magical goal versus Manchester United in the Europa League to make it 1-1 and therefore paving the path to the final. Of course, he is still young (24 years old) and developing, and therefore he will not be able to lead and show up in all games, for example the Europa League final against Sevilla.
However, he has the desire and work ethic to overcome this inconsistency, and if he carries on working on his game, he´ll soon be the player leading our club in almost every game, week in, week out. Generally said however, even if he does not come up with these so called “clutch moments” sometimes, him taking responsibility and not fearing failure is one of the positive characteristics he possesses.
Furthermore, it gives the team around him confidence, as they have a player to rely on that can create goals and opportunities out of nothing, even under high levels of pressure.
Coutinho is already regarded by many Reds as one of our main men, however, I believe if he continues working hard he will reach what Luis Suarez has predicted:
“Philippe Coutinho…I expect him to become Liverpool’s leading player.”
Coutinho is on his way to step into the space Suarez has left open after his departure to Barcelona.