Philippe Coutinho: What happens next?

Philippe Coutinho against Middlesbrough.
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Jürgen Klopp has discussed what Liverpool will do next in the Philippe Coutinho saga as the Brazilian continues to push for a move to FC Barcelona. 

Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has reiterated that Philippe Coutinho will not be sold by the club during this summer’s transfer window but admits he doesn’t know when the saga will come to a head.

Coutinho, who handed in a transfer request on the eve of Liverpool’s Premier League opener against Watford, has not played for the club since their 3-0 win in pre-season over Bayern Munich.

Speaking to ESPNFC after Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace, Klopp had this to say on the no.10’s future: “It’s not my decision, I’m the manager of the football team so when players are available, I coach them, and that is how it is.

“At the moment Phil is not available, but you can imagine missing Philippe Coutinho would be a big blow for each team in the world, so it is for us. But it’s the situation so I cannot change it, and whatever I would say cannot change it.”

The German’s comments definitely do not inspire confidence among the Liverpool fanbase and Klopp genuinely seems none the wiser as to whether Coutinho will simply clean up his act and get on with it or carry on like a spoilt child.

This then begs the question, what next?

Mamadou Sakho is the only other Liverpool player to truly push Klopp’s buttons during his time at the club so far and he’s ended up banished from the first-team and squashed so far up against the shop window that he’s probably struggling to breathe.

It could be argued that Coutinho is far more important to the club than Sakho but that matters not to Klopp. The German is a man of principle and his principle is simple: if you want to play, you will play. If not, you’re gone.

However, for Coutinho, it’s going to take a lot more than a simple “sorry boss, let me back on the pitch,” to get back into the starting XI.

Klopp’s trust will be broken, and as shown by the Mamadou Sakho situation, it’s not an easy thing to win back. Coutinho has single-handedly won Liverpool Football Club games time and time again but how’s he going to handle a battle of willpower?

It seems bizarre that just three months after the Brazilian roared back into life and helped to inspire Liverpool to a fourth-placed finish ahead of both Arsenal and Manchester United that we are now faced with a situation where he not only doesn’t play for Liverpool but any club at all.

Not a good place to be for a player who will be hoping to be part of an exciting Brazil side at the 2018 World Cup in Russia next summer. What happens when the window slams shut on September 1st and he’s still at Liverpool with Barcelona having moved on and signed new targets?

Will he really risk the threat of being left to rot in the reserves with such an important tournament on the horizon?

Of course, only time will tell but from where I’m sitting, it looks like now is as good a time as any for the Brazilian to start working on his apology.


  1. Liverpool Football Club is BIGGER than Couthino. I believe Couthino had played in La Liga while on loan from Inter Milan. If he was so exceptional, why didn’t Barcelona buy him then? It IS because of the opportunities that Liverpool accorded him that he is known now. Liverpool had invested heavily on him to bring him to be the player he is. Couthino has a Contract with Liverpool. He should have honour his Contract. Nothing wrong for him to want to play for any other team but his contract is binding. He, therefore, should abide by it even on the subject of transfer. If what is reported earlier is correct: ‘Couthino has told JK that he will never again play for Liverpool’, a stand that could be interpreted as saying he is bigger than Liverpool, then he doesn’t deserve to be in the Liverpool first team, reserve or even within the Liverpool fraternity. Liverpool FC should fall back on the Contract that he willingly signed. Penalise him accordingly, and deal with him as with any other assets, even to the extend of getting him to rot in oblivion.

    Just to side track, Liverpool football club was successful more than a quarter century ago. The players that Liverpool had then were mostly from Europe (UK, Germany, Denmark, other Scandinavian countries). They pride themselves playing for Liverpool. Some got themselves transferred to other big European teams. These transfers got the consent of Liverpool FC. There seemed to be very little fuse in their transfer. Is it not the time now for Liverpool FC to revisit this root which proved to be successful?
    South American players only think that the ultimate prize is to play for Barcelona or Real Madrid, let them therefore tried their best to get to the two teams from their countries. Nurture and give opportunities to the real European children to play for Liverpool team.

  2. goood asnalysis totally agree -no opportunity for south american who just use europeean clubs astepping stone to join barca or real


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