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Philippe Coutinho exit would be awful for Liverpool FC, admits Roberto Firmino

Jurgen Klopp has conceded that the final decision over Philippe Coutinho’s future is out of his hands, with FC Barcelona said to be pushing hard to finalise a deal this week.

football Updated: Aug 15, 2017 18:38 IST
Philippe Coutinho,Liverpool FC,Roberto Firmino
Phillipe Coutinho is supposedly hoping for a move to FC Barcelona from Liverpool FC.(AP)

Liverpool forwardRoberto Firmino admits it would be “awful” if team-mate Philippe Coutinho wassold to Barcelona.

Coutinho’s future at Anfield is far from certain, with the 25-year-old said to have submitted a transfer request just hours after Liverpool ownerFenway Sports Group stated publicly that itwould not entertain any transfer offers.

Manager Jurgen Klopp has conceded that the final decision over the Brazil star’s future is out of his hands, with Barca said to be pushing hard to finalise a deal this week.

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Firmino is trying not to be distracted by the talk surrounding his compatriot, who is sidelined with a back injury, but he would be hugely disappointed to see him leave.

“I prefer to not think of this because it would be awful,” he said, as quoted by The Liverpool Echo.“He’s a great player, but also a great friend to me.

“It is normal that great teams are interested in his football, but my concentration is now on the team.

Liverpool midfielder Roberto Firmino (L) and Sadio Mane break through the Watford defence. ( AFP )

“My objective is to win cups with Liverpool so I can enter the history of this club.”

Defender Dejan Lovren is also eager for Coutinho to stay and warns that he is unlikely to be sold unless Barca make a significant bid.

“I can’tsay much about Coutinho, we players don’t discuss that among each other,” he told SportskeNovosti ahead of Liverpool’s Champions League play-off first leg against Hoffenheim.“The club will decide.

“Of course we would miss him because he is great player, hard to replace. Him and [Adam] Lallana will be hugely missed in the Hoffenheim game.

READ | Philippe Coutinho left out of Liverpool’s squad for Hoffenheim clash

“When I came to Liverpool, in a €20million transfer, I was expensive. And now defenders cost €40million, €50million, €60million. Times change.

“And if Neymar costs more than €200million, you will not sell Coutinho for €50million. That’s how the market works.”

First Published: Aug 15, 2017 17:03 IST