It looks like FC Barcelona is keen to find a new home for Philippe Coutinho before the start of next season, with the Brazilian struggling to establish himself as the prolific goalscorer and playmaker he was at Anfield.
However, former Liverpool standout Danny Murphy thinks the Reds shouldn’t bring back Coutinho but turn their attention to Ousmane Dembele instead.
“Dembele would be a fantastic signing for Liverpool. He’s not had the best time at Barcelona, but clearly has an abundance of talent and the ability to win games by himself. If he can recapture his belief in his ability then Liverpool would have a formidable front three with him, (Sadio) Mane and (Mo) Salah,” Murphy told Bwin.
Moreover, he even went on to state he could replace Roberto Firmino in the team’s Starting XI and would be a better option up front for Jurgen Klopp.
“When playing to his potential, I think he would edge (Roberto) Firmino out of the first team. Firmino is the type of player that would raise his own game and everyone’s around him if Dembele came into the team. He’ll fight for his place week in, week out and, if you’re not giving your all on the pitch, then Firmino will be right there to take it,” he added.
Also, Murphy claimed that bringing Coutinho back would actually be a step back for the defending UEFA Champions League winners, urging them not to accept Barcelona’s alleged loan offer:
“Liverpool would be taking a step backward if they re-signed Coutinho. Coutinho is at his best when playing in a central three, not wide left. If he were to come back, he would change the dynamic of the team and it would disrupt the balance. Liverpool’s midfield three are all super-athletes who defend as much as they attack, which they’ll lose if playing Coutinho there. Klopp had the ability to try a different formation once Coutinho departed and the results speak for themselves. It would be risky to revert back to accommodating Coutinho,” he concluded.