Leicester boss Rodgers defends Coutinho, sparking transfer talk

Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers has fuelled rumours that his club may move for Philippe Coutinho by lavishing praise on the Brazilian.

The playmaker moved to Liverpool from Inter in January 2013 when Rodgers was in the Anfield dugout and his rise to the elite of football coincided with his role under the Northern Irishman.

Coutinho blossomed with the Reds and helped them to an unlikely Premier League title surge in the 2013/14 campaign and played over 110 times for the club when managed by Rodgers, who was dismissed in October 2015 and replaced by Jurgen Klopp.

Coutinho is on the market this summer and the Foxes are one of five Premier League clubs who are battling for the player, according to the front page of last Thursday’s edition of El Mundo Deportivo with Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal and Newcastle United also keen.

“Coutinho is a great talent,” Rodgers said, as cited by Diario Sport. “He intimidates opponents with his quality when he has the ball.  It is sad to see how there are people who are trying to discredit him now because things have not been going very well for him in recent months.

“He is a top boy, and I am sure that if he returns to the Premier League he will show that he is out of the ordinary.”

Bayern Munich – where Coutinho is on a season-long loan arrangement from Barcelona – have an option to buy the Brazil international for €120m at the end of the campaign but multiple reports suggest this will not be exercised.

Barcelona are said to be keen on selling the former Liverpool star this year to raise vital funds, while the player is said to have little interest in returning to Inter or joining Paris Saint-Germain and instead is keen on a move to England.

The Brazilian scored 21 goals in 76 outings for Barcelona after moving in a club record €160m fee from Liverpool in January 2018 but he has consistently flattered to deceive since.

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“You’ve got so many good young players in NZ, I don’t know how you do it. Actually I do, you’ve got three of the biggest academies in the world: Fiji, Samoa and Tonga.” – Find out who said this right here.

Tags Philippe Coutinho