Liverpool FC leave Philippe Coutinho out of squad for Manchester City clash

Coutinho will miss crunch Saturday lunchtime encounter at the Etihad Stadium

Liverpool FC leave Philippe Coutinho out of squad for Manchester City clash

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September 8th, 2017

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Liverpool have enjoyed a strong start to the season without Philippe Coutinho and they’ll have to continue a little longer without the Brazilian.

Jurgen Klopp has decided to leave the midfielder out of the squad for Saturday’s match against Manchester City, with Coutinho having been the subject of several transfer bids from Barcelona before the window closed.

It appears that the player was keen to sign for the Spanish club, although Liverpool stuck to their guns and turned down offers in excess of £100 million, with Coutinho now having to face a short-term future at the Merseyside club.

Klopp feels as though his star man needs a little longer before being played in the first team and also spoke about the benefits of having Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the squad.

“I decided to leave [Coutinho] out of the squad for City so we can use the time for extra training,” Klopp said.

“We have to prepare him for the rest of the season and that is quite difficult with our fixtures and schedule. He agreed – he didn’t want to just play 15 minutes.”

Oxlade-Chamberlain is expected to be named on the bench for Saturday’s match, with the former Arsenal winger set to make his debut and Klopp is excited that he’s part of the club’s future.

“He can fit in a few positions,” said Klopp.

“We want to have him on the pitch as often as possible. He is a very good football player and fits really well in the squad.”

Oxlade-Chamberlain’s pace will have been a driving reason for Liverpool to land his signature and Klopp will feel he can develop the 24-year-old in the same that he’s done with several other members of the squad.

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