Coutinho would not have played again for Liverpool, indicates Jurgen Klopp

Jurgen Klopp was obviously asked about the Philippe Coutinho transfer in his first pre-match press conference since the Brazilian left Anfield in a £142M deal to Barcelona.

The Liverpool boss said he wasn't disappointed the player had left and suggested that the player would have been no use to the club in the second half of the season.

Asked about why the club sold Coutinho in January, Klopp answered:

"There was no other option.  It's an easy answer.  If there is somebody who should be angry or disappointed then it could be the manager of the club - and I'm not.

Because I know we tried absolutely everything - the club tried everything to convince Phil to stay here and carry on going the way together with us.

It was his dream as everyone knows and he left Liverpool for only club and it was Barcelona and we have to accept that.  The club tried everything -  I knew it would come up again in this transfer window.  It came up massively.

It would have been difficult if we say, what we could have done of course, 'look there's your contract you have to stay here' and to use him as a player in the second half of the season.  That's a decision I have to make - Does it make sense? Do I think I can still use him?  Can he help us still?   And to be honest it was clear 100% there was no chance.

He was not ready to do that anymore.

He did fantastic in the first half of the season after the things we had to deal with in the summer - the team did fantastic.  It's never easy (for the team).  But it was clear - that's over now so we made that decision.  That's it.

Asked about replacements, Klopp was coy:

'We don't have to replace him.  We have to step up.  We will have 11 players and we have played fantastic football without Phil.

'I don't want to sound disrespectful because I really liked him.  He was five years here.  He was here when I came in.  If you don't miss a person then there would have been something wrong  when you were together.  I'm sure he's missing us - maybe he doesn't realise at the moment when everything is new there.

'We had fantastic games with him, and not that good games with him.  We played good without him and not that good without him.

'It's happened a week ago.  In terms of replacing him we will not do crazy things.  'Right' before 'expensive'.

Liverpool take on Manchester City in the Sunday afternoon game at Anfield.  Man City have not lost a game in the Premier League this season, whilst the reds have lost just twice - one of which was the 5-0 mauling suffered away from home after Sadio Mane's sending off.

Jurgen Klopp - Pre Man City Press Conference

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