Klopp Not Interested in Coutinho Rumours, Barcelona Boss Plays Down Interest

The rumours linking Liverpool attacker Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona aren’t going away anytime soon and ahead of the meeting with cross-town rivals Everton on Friday, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp was forced to wade in to the fray.

“I try to be honest, but you know that in January and all the next transfer windows I don’t talk about that. Phil especially,” stressed the gaffer. “I was really happy about the last few performances and his impact. He showed his character in the games and in the training sessions,” continued the German manager. “That is what I am interested in. All the rest I can’t and I am not interested in talking about because if I open the door you [the media] will run all the way through,” added Klopp, never one to talk too indepth about transfers. “In my business it makes absolutely no sense to talk about things that could maybe happen because that creates stories that are 90 per cent of the time not true.”

While sources close to the club are adamant that there’s no fresh offer from the Barca hierarcy and talks are not ongoing between the two sides, if you look anywhere else you’d think that Coutinho is already living it up in Catalonia. Nursing a thigh injury, the Brazilian is out of the FA Cup showdown with the Toffees on Friday, but that’s only lead to reports that he’s now “on strike” and has “refused” to play for the Reds again.

As coy as Barcelona has been publicly, through both current and former players they’ve made no secret of their desire to bring Coutinho to the club and with the man himself keen on making the move, it seems only a matter if and not when the two sides finally thrash out terms. With that being said, considering he’d be unable to play for Barcelona in the Champions League and Ousmane Dembele set to return to action, it sounds like it won’t be this winter.

“I have nothing to say on the subject of Coutinho,” said Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde, speaking to the press ahead of their Copa del Rey meeting with Celta Vigo. “He isn’t one of our players. He is at another team and we respect the fact that he is at another team,” added the Spaniard, playing down reports of an imminent move for the diminutive playmaker. “He is a great player and we don’t know what is going to happen in the future. However, I much prefer the players that I currently have in my team and they are the ones who concern me.”

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