Could Coutinho be genuinely world-class?
Liverpool’s long-serving anchorman Lucas has lauded his brilliant Brazilian teammate Coutinho, who’s arguably been our Player of the Season so far.
The pair are close friends off the pitch, but Coutinho’s displays over the past two months warrant such praise regardless.
“Philippe’s main strength is probably the final pass. He can pick a pass very well and sees things that maybe [other players] don’t see. His creativity is incredible and that’s why he’s called ‘The Magician’ by all of us in the team,” Lucas began.
“He’s got very quick feet and is very skillful. It is very hard to take the ball from him and that is another of his strengths.
“He has improved defensively with his aggression and pressing. He has added to his game.
“I think he can achieve anything that he wants to. He has the qualities and the potential to be one of the best players in the world.
“He is keen to learn and that is the beginning. By playing games, he will keep developing.
“I can see Philippe having a big history in football because he is a talented player and a nice guy, so it’s a good combination.”
22-year-old Coutinho’s form has seen him win our Player of the Month award for both November and December, and his performance versus Sunderland gives him a fair chance of collecting the January one too if he maintains his current level.
He’s thrived in the 3-4-3 formation, as it enables him the chance to find pockets of space in the final third from which he can play the intricate passes Lucas mentioned…
Having struggled to get into the side early on this term, Coutinho’s now one of the first names on the team-sheet, and he’ll be lining up against Aston Villa on Saturday in the Premier League.
It’s worth mentioning though that Lucas himself also deserves some serious praise for his excellent defensive contribution at the base of midfield.