Jamie Carragher sends positive message to Liverpool fans about Philippe Coutinho
The Liverpool legend is backing the Reds to keep Philippe Coutinho despite interest from Barcelona
Jamie Carragher believes Philippe Coutinho will stay at Liverpool despite the Brazilian’s desire to move to Barcelona.
The South American midfielder has emerged as a candidate to replace Brazil international Neymar at the Catalan side before the close of the summer transfer window.
Neymar’s world-record £198m move to Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain triggered Barcelona’s interest in signing the Liverpool number 10.
Coutinho signed a new five-year contract with the Merseyside outfit back in January before the attacker helped to fire the Reds to a top-four finish.
However, reports on Friday suggested that Coutinho has handed in a transfer request at Liverpool as the former Inter Milan midfielder looks to force through a move to Barcelona.
Liverpool face a similar issue with Luis Suarez in 2013 but managed to convince the Uruguay international to start for one more season before selling the striker to the Spanish side in a £75m deal 12 months later.
Former Reds defender Carragher believes Liverpool will stand firm again and keep Coutinho despite interest from Barcelona.
“I still think he will be at the club and I would keep him. Luis Suarez put in a transfer request, stayed 12 months and played the best football of his life,” Carragher told Sky Sports.
“I’ve said before there is not a problem with him wanting to go to Barcelona, 99 per cent of footballers all round the world will want to do that.
“When a transfer request goes in, the supporters of that club feel it a little bit more, but again, it’s part of the game. When that transfer request went in, I’m sure Jurgen Klopp turned around to and said to him ‘I know you want to go to Barcelona, you don’t have to put it in writing, we know, it’s obvious’.
“But the stuff about not getting on with Klopp, these stories getting fed out, that’s where I think that crosses the line. I spoke about (Virgil) Van Dijk (of Southampton) where he’s not playing or not training, there’s no problem wanting to move, it’s part of the game but there is a line you don’t cross where you ruin your own reputation and that needs to stop.
“Talking about Klopp and not getting on and someone feeding the story. Stop that, you’ve put your transfer request in, now it’s up to the club.
“You’ve signed a five-year deal, they will make the decision. The decision from the owners that they’ve stated is that he’s going to stay.
Liverpool signed Coutinho in an £8.5m deal from Serie A giants Inter Milan in the 2013 January transfer window.