Liverpool coach Klopp says Coutinho not for sale

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Hong Kong, July 21 (IANS) Liverpool head coach Jürgen Klopp on Friday said attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho is not for sale amid rumours of an $80 million euro ($93.25 million) move to Catalan football powerhouse FC Barcelona.

According to Liverpool’s official website, Klopp was asked if the Brazilian is not for sale. The German tactician replied: “Yes, that’s what we can say. But that’s not since this morning or yesterday, I’m not sure if it was different at any time. So, yes.

“I’m not surprised that any club is interested in players, if it is like this. A few people obviously see that Liverpool has a few good players. That’s how it is. But a very important message, maybe — we are not a selling club.

“We believe in working together, we believe in development together. We believe in using the basis. We want to work together, we want to make the next step together and for this we need to stay together. That’s how it is.”

Klopp revealed that Coutinho is yet to attain full fitness. “Phil is a very, very important player but we need to react better when he’s not on the pitch, that’s how it is,” he said.

“He was out for a few games (last season) and then he came back and was not in the best shape. He tried to get his rhythm back. With his quality he has the opportunity under pressure to be on the pitch. Other players, you keep in training.

“But Phil, when he is able to run properly you want to have him on the pitch again. So we have to be better even in moments like this.”

–IANS

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