‘Some things he did in training’: Klavan names ex-Liverpool teammate who had ‘something special’

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Ragnar Klavan has singled out one particular Liverpool player for praise when recounting his two years at the club.

The Estonian defender came to Anfield in 2016 before leaving for Cagliari in 2018, scoring twice in 53 appearances under Jurgen Klopp (Transfermarkt).

He played alongside the likes of Mo Salah, Virgil van Dijk, Sadio Mane, Bobby Firmino, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson on Merseyside, although it was another former teammate who especially dazzled him.

In an interview for the Liverpool Echo, Klavan has said: “There are so many names to choose from, but I still remember Coutinho’s year when he was really, really on fire. Some things he did in training were incredible, incredible things.

“So for me, it’s Coutinho in his last year when he was here. He was something special. I tried to (kick him) but he just got away! He was really on fire.”

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While the manner in which Philippe Coutinho left Liverpool five years ago might have irked many Reds supporters, there’s no denying that he was a fantastic player during his time at the club.

His 201 appearances yielded 54 goals and 45 assists (Transfermarkt), averaging just under 0.5 goal contributions per game, and he helped to lift Brendan Rodgers’ side from the mid-table mediocrity they occupied at the time of his arrival in January 2013.

He had a knack for a wonder goal, as displayed against Manchester City in March 2015 and Stoke on the opening weekend of the following season, among other occasions.

He also made the PFA Player of the Year shortlist in 2014/15 (BBC Sport) despite Liverpool enduring a difficult campaign which saw us finish sixth.

Coutinho’s star might have fallen at Barcelona after he departed Anfield, but the Reds got the best years of his career, and it’s no surprise that Klavan was left awestruck by witnessing the Brazilian at his peak firsthand.

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