Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho has consistently made it into the headlines over the past week with speculation over a move to Barcelona dominating coverage around the Reds’ star man.
It’s been reported by Sky Sports that the Catalan giants would be willing to fork out as much as €100 million for the Brazilian’s services next season. However, Coutinho potentially arriving at the club appears to hinge very much on Neymar’s future at the Camp Nou, with interest from PSG thought to be strong.
While the money being discussed is phenomenal and it could help the Reds capture some incredible signings before the summer is out, losing Coutinho could also hugely hinder the club’s progress under Jurgen Klopp, particularly now with Champions League football to come this term.
Despite admitting he is a fantastic player, former Reds midfielder Danny Murphy told Talksport he believes Liverpool should not turn down that kind of money for the 25-year-old.
“If Barca are prepared to pay over £80 million for Coutinho I think that’s good business.
“14 goals is his best return. When you think about it, if Liverpool are thinking he’s worth €100 million, what’s Dele Alli worth because he’s better than Coutinho.”
The ex-Liverpool man went on to discuss how great a player he thinks the former Inter Milan attacker is, but professed the benefits of using the cash injection from his potential sale to buy others in a similar mould.
“Listen I’m not sitting here saying get rid of him, get rid of him because he’s a wonderful footballer, no doubt about that.
“There are players out there you could get for less money who might give you just as much output.”
It’s an interesting take on the whole saga given that most Liverpool fans would be devastated if he left the club.
Should he go, however, there would certainly be a major hole to fill but it’s easy to see where Murphy is coming from, even if €100 million isn’t quite as sizeable a sum to use in the market as it may once have been.
Beyond the finances, there is also the club’s reputation to consider in a transfer like this. Klopp has stated the Reds are not a selling club but previous, and relatively recent, exits would, in fact, indicate the opposite is true.
For the Anfield outfit to curb their star names going, a firm stance here could be the first step in reversing the perception of the club across much of Europe – one which will sell for the right price.
Rob Lyons, Pundit Arena