Liverpool can keep Coutinho by matching his ambition – Molby

The former Reds midfielder believes feeling settled and competing for major honours will help to convince the Barcelona-linked playmaker to stay put

Jan Molby is not surprised to see Barcelona monitoring Philippe Coutinho, but believes the Brazilian is in ‘a good place’ and can be convinced to stay at Liverpool by the club matching his ambition.

A high-profile switch to La Liga continues to be mooted for the Samba star, with his form in the Premier League and for his country bringing him to the attention of world football’s biggest clubs.

‘Coutinho feels really good at Anfield’

Liverpool, though, are more than holding their own domestically this season, with Jurgen Klopp having guided them to the summit of England’s top division.

They are also through to the quarter-finals of the EFL Cup and have a FA Cup campaign to come in the new year.

Challenging for major honours is a big draw for any player, and Molby claims that feeling settled and valued in a team capable of competing at the highest level should help to keep Coutinho on Merseyside.

He told the Liverpool Echo: “The situation with Coutinho and these Barcelona rumours is one you want and one you don’t want. You want great players at your club and when you’ve got great players other clubs will be interested.

“Will Barcelona come for him? I can see why they would. You can see he’s a very Barcelona-type player, he would slot into that front three without any trouble. He’s kept saying the right things though and the big thing is he’s enjoying his football with Liverpool, it’s what got his career going.

LFC ‘can’t stop’ Coutinho joining Barca

“He was a very promising youngster but couldn’t quite get a foothold at the clubs he was at. Then Liverpool took a chance – a lot of people thought he would be too slight for the Premier League – and he’s now proved everybody wrong and is playing the best football of his career.

“He’s established himself as a Brazilian international, there’s going to be interest – the big boys will be interested – but he’s at a good place at the moment where he’s a key player and we shouldn’t underestimate the importance of that to a player.

“The fact that Liverpool are now a serious challenger means that the club may also be able to fulfil some of his ambitions. We know footballers want to win titles and play in the Champions League and I think he’s got every opportunity of achieving that with Liverpool.”

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11 2016

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