Liverpool are continuing to monitor Philippe Coutinho’s situation as the midfielder has been linked with a return to the Premier League.
Mundo Deportivo, via Sport Witness, have reported that Coutinho is a part of Jurgen Klopp’s plans should Liverpool lose a star during this transfer window. They also note that Tottenham’s interest makes them the main contender for his signature.
The Spanish news outlet state that the 29-year-old Brazilian has been made available for a loan move, as well as a permanent transfer, by Barcelona.
A return to Anfield would see Coutinho reunited with friend and international teammate Roberto Firmino. As recently as last year Firmino praised the former Liverpool man in an interview with FIFA.com.
He said “You simply can’t say that he’s not a magician. He has magical powers. He produces plays that don’t exist, that you couldn’t make up.
“It was a pleasure to play with him at Liverpool, and it’s a pleasure to play with him for the Seleção. I’m a huge fan of his. He’s one of the very best players in the world.”
The need for midfield reinforcements
Liverpool allowed the ever-present Gini Wijnaldum to leave on a free transfer this summer, and the future of captain Jordan Henderson still remains undecided. Other midfield options, such as Naby Keita and Oxlade-Chamberlain, have extensive injury records, all combining to make midfielder reinforcements essential.
Coutinho’s versatility to play out-wide or as a centre midfielder makes him the perfect match for Liverpool’s needs.
The Brazilian magician, as he was called during his time at Anfield, certainly delighted fans during his six-year spell with the club. We should also not forget that he played with Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino whilst at Liverpool, even if it was only for a short period of time. Coutinho scored seven goals in 14 league appearances, on track to eclipse his previous goal record, before departing in January 2018.
Coutinho’s return to Liverpool
In January 2018 Coutinho disappointed fans when he agreed to an astronomical £142 million move to Barcelona.
Since moving to Spain Coutinho has struggled to make the impact he desired. He managed just 12 league games for Barcelona last season having spent the previous year on loan at Bayern Munich.
It has been a fall from grace for the man who was a stalwart during his time at Liverpool.
What RTK has to say
Coutinho was a fan favourite at Anfield and I imagine many would welcome his return.
The Brazilian’s ability is unquestionable and Klopp will be aware of that more than anyone. Coutinho could easily find a roll in a variety of positions therefore adding needed quality and depth to this Liverpool squad.
A loan move for him would theoretically be amazing value for the club. However we should not forget that there is reportedly a clause within his original sale from Liverpool that triggers a further payment from Barcelona for £17 million should he accumulate another 10 appearances for the club. Therefore pursuit of a loan move could cost the club financially long-term by default.
As the report suggests, a move for Coutinho is made all the more likely should another star depart. If that is the case, Klopp and sporting director Michael Edwards may welcome the opportunity to bring back a familiar face at a reasonable cost.