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Jurgen Klopp "respected" Philippe Coutinho's decision to join Barcelona

Klopp
© Reuters
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp says that he had to "be fair" to Philippe Coutinho by allowing him to join Barcelona in 2018.

Jurgen Klopp has insisted that he "really respected" Philippe Coutinho's desire to swap Liverpool for Barcelona.

The Reds reluctantly sanctioned the Brazil international's switch to Camp Nou in a £142m deal a little over two years ago.

Coutinho's move to Barca has not gone to plan, however, having been sent out on loan to Bayern Munich after just one full season in Catalonia.

Klopp has now explained that he felt Liverpool had little choice but to let the playmaker leave, despite the fact that he penned a new long-term deal 12 months prior.

"I really respected Phil's switch from the first second," he told the Pure Football Podcast. "Not that I do that all the time but it felt 'oh wow that could be difficult'.

"So it's not about yes we signed a new contract so many weeks before that, but it was really clear he would not have asked me for any other club but for this club, there was no chance.

"Then we had to be hard in the summer because we had no other solution. We lost Adam Lallana [to injury] in that time as well, we would have lost two players.

"That's not possible, you cannot solve that on the transfer market. [Coutinho] was open to [staying] and that was really cool. Then you have to be fair in the window and say we can do it. We don't like it but we can do it."

Coutinho could be on his way back to the Premier League this summer, with Chelsea reportedly interested in signing him on loan.

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Bayern Munich's Philippe Coutinho celebrates scoring their third goal against Koln on September 21, 2019
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool29271166214582
2Manchester CityMan City28183768313757
3Leicester CityLeicester29165858283053
4Chelsea29146951391248
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd29129844301445
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves29101364134743
7Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd28111073025543
8Tottenham HotspurSpurs29118104740741
9Arsenal2891364036440
10Burnley29116123440-639
11Crystal Palace29109102632-639
12Everton29107123746-937
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2998122541-1635
14Southampton29104153552-1734
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton29611123240-829
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham2976163550-1527
17Watford2969142744-1727
18Bournemouth2976162947-1827
19Aston Villa2874173456-2225
20Norwich CityNorwich2956182552-2721

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