Klopp explains why ‘you cannot replace Phil Couthinho’

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been discussing how it is virtually impossible to sign a like-for-like replacement for former Red, Philippe Coutinho.

Brazil international Coutinho established himself as one of the Premier League’s best attacking midfielders during his five seasons at Anfield, before moving to Spanish giants Barcelona last January in a deal that could potentially rise to £142 million.

“You cannot replace Phil Coutinho with exactly the same kind of player,” Klopp told reporters.

“He’s Phil Coutinho. He has a specific style of play, tactically an outstanding player, can play as the winger, the ’10’, the ‘8’ – really great.

“I don’t want to put one of my players in the position where people will now say constantly ‘he’s the Phil replacement’.

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“I think the biggest thing we did in the second half of last season was that we didn’t need to speak too much about Phil. That wasn’t clear in January. How could we have known that?

“If we had still had Phil then we could have played with Phil in the final. Mo (Salah) goes out [injured], but Phil still there. Phil on the left wing, bring Sadio (Mane) to the other side, bring midfielder on – it’s a different story. It would have been nice but he wasn’t here any more. We wish him well.

“We don’t need to replace Phil. We need to make a squad for the next year. Out there on the market, there isn’t a Phil Coutinho light. It’s not there. But there are a lot of good players and we have brought a few of them in.”

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