Image Credit: Liverpool Thailand Fanclub FC (LTF. Football Club) via Facebook
It’s no secret that Barcelona have had star Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho firmly in their sights this transfer window. The Catalan giants have already had three previous bids rejected by the club as they look to hang on to their prized star player as they start a season that will see them back in Europe’s top tier of football.
Barca’s latest offer, believed to be somewhere in the vicinity of £114 million, was rejected and the owners of Liverpool, Fenway Sports Group, along with manager Jurgen Klopp, both remain adamant that he is absolutely not for sale. The Spanish organisation is testing the resolve of the club, though, and according to recent reports, they are preparing one more huge offer of £138m. This would comprise of an initial payment of £101m, with £37m in add-ons and bonuses.
Barca have continually said that they are on the verge of signing Coutinho and the Spanish press has been announcing that his arrival at the Camp Nou is imminent. Even Barcelona’s general manager, Pep Segura, has claimed that a deal was close. However, in every interview that Klopp has conducted, he has repeatedly told the press that these rumours were false, and that the Reds supporters have nothing to worry about.
Image credit: Liverpool FC Till I Die via Facebook
On top of this mess, Coutinho has expressed his desire to leave the club to both manager and owner. Now it looks as though he is getting ready to talk to the press about his unhappiness with the club, and how they have handled the situation, as well at expressing his discontent and the management’s decision to not let him leave.
He has missed the opening four games of the season so far due to an apparent back injury – but many believe that he is not playing because of his intentions to leave England and make the move to Spain. It was widely predicted that Liverpool would struggle without their key midfielder; however, three wins and an unlucky draw has a lot of fans questioning if they actually need him at the club anymore.
The side has qualified for Champions League football after defeating German outfit Hoffenheim 6-3 on aggregate, and taken seven points in their opening three Premier League fixtures. They don’t seem to be in any immediate trouble at this point in time, and if you look at their upcoming game against a tough opponent like Man City, for example, Liverpool are only the narrow underdogs at 16/5 to take the three points. This shows that the depth in the squad, as well as the new signings that have come in during the transfer window, can adequately cover his absence.
It’s never positive to have a player in the club that takes the attention away from the actual football, and it can often lead to animosity between the players. In some cases, the tension can even spread out onto the football pitch and that’s when it can cause real damage to the team. Management will undoubtedly want to make sure this doesn’t happen and there needs to be some resolution to this issue quickly.