With this “Winter” break happening in the Premier League, things are going to be a bit slow with the news. There’s very few games happening, the Women’s match got postponed again, and there’s not a lot to talk about. So of course that means that former players are going to walk into their columns and drop opinions no one really cares about.
Steve McManaman, writing for HorseRacing.Net (you read that right!), decided to talk a little bit about what transfer business Liverpool should do in the upcoming Summer window, now that the January window is closed and has been for a while. Liverpool have, in the past few years, taken the stance of not buying for buying’s sake and spending money on positions that need improving - hence rumours surrounding midfielder Kai Havertz and striker Timo Werner. That position of a midfielder, being so nebulous in it’s actual roles, has apparently opened the door for McManaman to say we should sign another midfielder instead, and one that is very familiar with Liverpool the club and it’s culture.
“I wouldn’t mind seeing Coutinho back. He’s a brilliant player but a lot of it is just down to economics,” McManaman wrote in his column.
“If they can bring Coutinho back for a reasonable fee and potentially sell a couple of players who aren’t playing regularly, then that could work. There are rumours that Xherdan Shaqiri may leave at the end of the season, and Adam Lallana may want to play more often.
“If there’s space available then I’d certainly like Coutinho back, as he was a wonderful player for Liverpool. He’s that type of player that when plan A isn’t working he can change the game. He scored some incredible goals for Liverpool and though he’d have to win the fans over after he asked to leave, I think that most fans would recognise how good he was for Liverpool.”
Ignoring the fact that Adam Lallana’s contract is up this summer and he would be leaving on a free transfer so that means the club wouldn’t get any money from him towards this ridiculous signing, we have to go back even further to that year. That last year with Philippe Coutinho. Where part of the time he was “injured”, the other part of the time he was telling the team he was going to leave before anything else was solid, and the other part is that he spent money out of his own pocket to leave the club.
That is not the attitude or actions of someone that wants to play for Liverpool, and shouldn’t play for Liverpool, regardless of how their career has gone since leaving. It’s clear that he’s made a mistake, as he’s currently on loan to Bayern Munich instead of at his dream club Barcelona that he worked so hard to get at. But that is his mistake that he must live with.
“He seems to have lost his way a bit at the minute, he needs a bit of TLC and an arm around him doesn’t he? So if he wants to come back to Liverpool and the deal was good then I’d have no qualms taking him back because he’s a lovely player,” McManaman added.
Liverpool Football Club is not a rehabilitation center. Just as it was not the club’s responsibility to teach Jon Flanagan to not beat up his girlfriend, it is not the club’s responsibility to welcome back a player that not only worked so hard to leave that he paid millions out of his own pocket and hired a crew to document his leaving Liverpool for Barcelona, but was inconsistent as a midfielder and truly only contributed some other worldly goals outside the box.
There is no way that Philippe Coutinho makes this team better. There is no place that he fits in, as he would demand a starting position and quite simply doesn’t deserve it. We have reached the highest highs without him, winning three trophies in the span of six months and more confident in our march to that historic 19th league trophy than we ever were with him.
There is literally no reasoning on Earth that would convince this writer that bringing Coutinho back would be a good idea, and I say this as a fan writer for a site that covered the departure saga extensively. It simply isn’t worth it, for the club or the fans.