With Barcelona circling like sharks around Coutinho, is it time for Liverpool to finally land Naby Keita. A poor off season last year left Barcelona with some serious issues as Andre Gomes, Dennis Suarez and Paco Alcacer all failed to impress this year at the Catalan Giant. Is it time for Coutinho to link up with some of the worlds greatest?
Arguably one of the best creative players of the past 2-3 premier league seasons, Philippe Coutinho has really come into his own in the absence of Steven Gerrard. With most of Liverpools play dictated by the brazillian, Coutinho sets the tempo for offensive side to Klopps attack. Paired up with Lallana and Can in the centre of midfield, he is allowed to roam in the pocket of space between the oppositions defence and midfield picking out through balls and striking bangers from long range.
13 goals in 31 appearances is rather impressive for a player deployed mainly for link up play. Combined with 7 assists for the 2016/17 season and Coutinho seems like a perfect fit for any title challenging club. However, a shooting accuracy of 36% puts into perspective his shot selection. Instead of playing the killer 10 yard ball through to strikers, Coutinho would much rather curl one form the outside of the box.
A set piece magician on his day, would Liverpool fans be happy to settle for £80 million to Barcelona.
Should this deal go through, you can bet money on Klopp going all out for Naby Keita. Perfect for the high intensity, pressing style of play implemented by Klopp and just 22 years old, it seems as though his fate for next season would be sealed if Coutinho was to leave. 80 successful tackles and 81 interceptions in 31 games last season signal the type of player Keita is. Comparisons to one N’Golo Kante have only helped increase the Guineans value.
Second to Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski, the midflied star was adored by fans in the league with his aggressive defensive work and break up play. His attacking output isn’t too bad, either with 8 goals and 7 assists from a defensive minded, box to box midfielder, along with the passing ability likened to that of Andreas Iniesta, all the signs point to how good his is.
Nonetheless, Keita plays for RB Leipzig, a team owned by Red Bull, no matter how much money is thrust at the club, its unlikely they will sell for anything less than £75+ million, money that wouldve bought you 2 N’Golo Kante’s last year. An all action midfielder, i ant help but feel he would work incredible with Coutinho and Can in the same team.
Imagine that team on the counter attack, Can and Keita to break up the ball, Coutinho to connect the attack and Salah, Mane and Firmino running at you. Oh.My.Lord. I feel as though all Liverpool need is that one star signing to thrust them back up into title contention for next season.