Philippe Coutinho has signed for Aston Villa and Leicester City coach Brendan Rodgers, who led Barcelona’s loan ace at Liverpool, has admitted his surprise over the midfielder’s career path.
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Although it was under Jurgen Klopp when he secured his unfortunate £ 103.5 million transfer to Barcelona in January 2018, Coutinha was brought to Anfield as a teenager by Rodgers, who expected him to start at Camp Nou.
“I have to say I’m very surprised that he didn’t make it in Barcelona because I thought if the player and the club were coordinated, it’s probably the two of them,” Rodgers said.
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“Sometimes, if the environment isn’t right for whatever reason … for Philip, it’s all in the environment.
“If he feels this love and feels this responsibility, then he will succeed. I am sure he will be very good for Steven, he just has to come back to play regularly. He is shown in Premier League is a top player and will try to return to that level.
This was also revealed by the manager of Lisic Chelsea, where he coached the reserve team between 2006 and 2008, targeted the playmaker before kidnapping him Series A giants Inter Milan from home clothes Vasco da Gama.
“He’s an amazing actor and a great guy,” Rodgers continued. “I remember when we brought him in at 19. I saw him as a young player and we hoped to bring him to Chelsea, but he already agreed to go to Inter Milan.
“We were able to bring him in when he was 19. I think people might have questioned his physicality at the time, but during his time at Liverpool and his development, he proved how fantastic an actor he was.” He is a very humble boy.
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Gerrard’s influence on the transfer, the loan until the end of the season, was obvious from Anfield’s point of view, and Coutinho new club website: “I talked a lot with the manager, with Stevie, and he told me about the club and his ambitions.
“I’m very happy to be here and I want to enjoy my football.”
Number 63 Brazil International added: “I have known Stevie for a long time. I played with him and learned a lot from him.
“He is someone I admire very much. I hope to do my best here. I will definitely work hard and I hope we can do a good job together.”