MX23RW : Sunday, July 22 18:36:39

Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho: 'Liverpool worked hard to keep me'

Coutinho: 'Liverpool worked hard to keep me'
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New Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho acknowledges that Liverpool "tried very hard" to keep him at Anfield before he completed a switch to Camp Nou.

New Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho has expressed his gratitude to Liverpool, admitting that the Merseyside giants had worked hard to keep him at Anfield.

Over the weekend, Liverpool confirmed that their star man was close to joining Barca for a British record fee, and the Brazilian international has now been officially unveiled at the La Liga leaders.

However, at a press conference, Coutinho acknowledged Liverpool's efforts to keep him, admitting that he was thankful for their decision to accept Barcelona's offer.

The 25-year-old said: "I'm very content. Very happy. Like I said before it's a dream. Thanks to lots of people, firstly God, my parents and my family who are here with me in every moment.

"I'd like to thank the president of FC Barcelona, the directors who had so much patience. I would like to thank Liverpool for the five years I had there and the directors, Mike Gordon who understood what I wanted, my dream, and they tried very hard to convince me to stay.

"To the fans who shared five years with me, thank you."

Coutinho will not make his Barcelona debut for another three weeks after picking up a thigh injury.

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Ivan Rakitic in action for Barcelona during their La Liga clash with Granada at the Camp Nou on October 29, 2016
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