Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho has welcomed his club’s signings of Sadio Mané and Georginio Wijnaldum this summer, saying he is looking forward to linking up with the duo in the upcoming 2016/17 season.
Mané and Wijnaldum joined Liverpool from Southampton and Newcastle United respectively and have since begun pre-season work with the squad, with the former having already featured in four games for the Reds. Coutinho is relishing the prospect of playing with both and insists that the increase in players vying for a place in the starting line-up can only be good for the team.
The Brazilian told the club’s official website:
“I am looking forward to playing with them.
“They’re both very good players and fast players, so maybe you can pass a long ball and they’ll arrive to it. But it’s not only them, the squad is very good and there are a lot of good players. I hope we can all do a good job together this year.
“There are a lot of players now and there is good competition in the squad, which helps you to get better and helps the team.”
Of the four games that Mané has already played for his new club, Coutinho has featured in two. The little magician admits he has enjoyed playing alongside the Senegalese striker and notes one particular attribute of his that has impressed him.
“It’s been very good playing with Sadio so far, but if anything he’s too fast! That’s good because you need this in your game.
“Everyone is very happy with him – he is a nice guy and very good player.”
It’s certainly good to see Coutinho acknowledging his teammates and – if you haven’t already noticed – this is as close as Reds fans have gotten to hearing the Brazilian commit his future to Liverpool after almost half the summer was filled with rumours of a switch to Paris Saint-Germain. The 24-year-old seems to be going about his business in typical quiet fashion and also expressed his desire for success with Liverpool next season, after a fairly disappointing previous campaign.
He added: “I am confident for this season. I think everyone feels confident. Last season we had some opportunities but couldn’t take them.
“That has made us stronger and now we are hungry to win titles and to be able to fight.”
The abundance in attacking talent that Jürgen Klopp has surely puts his side in a great position to challenge for some silverware next season. Coutinho and co will look to be at their very best in order to achieve that target.