Jurgen Klopp 'gives in' to Philippe Coutinho's Liverpool transfer demands

Tom Roddy

Liverpool will give in to Philippe Coutinho’s demands and allow him to join Barcelona in January, according to reports in Spain.

The Brazilian playmaker submitted a transfer request in the summer after Barcelona made clear its intention to sign Coutinho, but Liverpool refused to sell—even rejecting a £135 million (about $178 million) bid.

Jurgen Klopp and the board at Anfield held firm, with Coutinho effectively reintroduced to the first-team midway through September and since then scoring four times so far this season.

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But Liverpool is now prepared to sell the 25-year-old to the La Liga leader when the transfer window reopens at the beginning of the new year, according to Mundo Deportivo.

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The Spanish newspaper also suggests that Klopp won’t admit a deal could be done, nor will he rule it out. “I have no idea,” Klopp reportedly said regarding a potential move. “We will see. We do not talk about things like this. Can you imagine what it would be like to say ‘yes, we have an agreement’?

“Right now, the truth is that nobody thinks about this. We do not talk about that, why should we?"

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He added: “In general, as a club, we have to create a situation in which players want to be part of everything they have. At this point, we have this. Nobody thinks about January, nobody thinks about June or July.”


Philippe Coutinho, right, at Wembley Stadium, London, October 22.

David Ramos/Getty

But following the defensive debacle for Liverpool at Wembley Stadium on Sunday against Tottenham, a £135 million pot of cash to invest in January would seem a tempting prospect for Klopp.

The German watched his team implode, with center back Dejan Lovren one of the main culprits to allow Harry Kane to put Spurs 2-0 ahead within 12 minutes.

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Klopp had wanted to strengthen his defense in the summer, making Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk his first choice. But the board at St. Mary’s refused to allow the Dutchman to leave and Klopp had no back-up option.

Barcelona’s technical director Robert Fernandez was at Wembley to watch Coutinho, Mundo Deportivo says, but he was also keen on seeing a group of Tottenham players.

Harry Kane and Dele Alli were both on Fernandez’s radar, the report says, as well as Christian Eriksen and Davinson Sanchez.

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