Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher insists that despite Barcelona’s flattery, Philip Coutinho should stay at Liverpool for at least one more season.
The Brazilian midfielder has been linked with a move to the Catalans since bursting onto the football scenes in seasons past. Many cited his childhood friend Neymar as the pulling force needed to convince the Liverpool number 10 to join the Spanish club.
However, the irony is that Coutinho, instead of playing alongside the former, will rather end up as his replacement following his compatriot’s big-money move to PSG. The complication, nonetheless, is that Liverpool is very adamant to let the core member of the side leave. The club is said to have rejected bids estimated to be worth 109 million euros in recent weeks.
The latest report from Sky Sports suggests that Coutinho has officially handed in a transfer request to force a dream move to Camp Nou. Former defender of the Merseyside outfits, Jamie Carragher, conceded the player will eventually leave if Barcelona maintains their pursuit.
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 11, 2017
However, the ex-England international advised that the 25-year-old player-maker stays for at least a season and joins the Spanish club next season, just as Cristiano Ronaldo did in his Real Madrid move back in 2008.
“He [Coutinho] hasn’t come out with anything publicly.
“Some players like [Southampton defender Virgil] van Dijk have put in transfer requests and Riyad Mahrez has been vocal at Leicester.
“Philippe Coutinho is not that type of lad. He’s a very quiet lad and I wouldn’t expect a transfer request to come in from him anytime soon,” Carragher told talkSPORT.
“I see Coutinho at Liverpool for another 12 months – even if he stays – I don’t think Barcelona will be going away.
“[Cristiano] Ronaldo did the same thing at Real Madrid. Manchester United got another 12 months out of him when they felt he was going to move on.
“I don’t see Barcelona going away. And obviously, Philippe Coutinho is hopefully thinking they won’t go away.”
Reminiscing the Cristiano Ronaldo version of this escapade, Sir Alex Ferguson revealed in his book “My Autobiography” how he convinced the Portuguese star to stay for another season after helping the Red Devils win the UEFA Champions League in 2008.
With Real Madrid having already attracted star men Ruud van Nistelrooy and David Beckham, Ferguson felt bullied by Los Blancos. The Scottish manager infamously labeled Real a “mob” and further iterated that he “wouldn’t sell them a virus” in 2008.
However, despite his best efforts, Ronaldo eventually completed his switch to the Bernabeu outfits in a then world-record fee of 80 million pounds back in 2009.