The Liverpool legend outlined the reason why Phillipe Coutinho has sensationally handed in a transfer request.
The latest transfer saga of the summer has divided the Anfield faithful, as the Brazilian has his heart set on a move to Spanish giants Barcelona. The Catalan outfit have made it clear that they want Coutinho at the Nou Camp, having lodged bids upwards of £80m.
Upon submitting his transfer request on Friday, many Liverpool fans disowned the midfielder, but others, including one Steven Gerrard, are willing to give him a break if he ends up staying.
Speaking on BT Sport’s Premier League Tonight show, Gerrard implored the 25-year-old to stay, likening the situation to that Luis Suarez found himself in in 2013. Then being headhunted also, Suarez decided to stay on for another season before departing the following year.
“The problem here are Barcelona, because they will be saying to Coutinho’s representatives that it’s ‘now or never’. If he doesn’t come now we’re never coming back for him. They’re piling on the pressure and that’s why he’s reacted”, Gerrard stated.
“It’s always been his dream to play for Barcelona, and the kid is panicking thinking he will not get his move if he doesn’t go now.
I have a bit [of sympathy] for him, he’s not a bad kid.”
Gerrard did acknowledge however that Coutinho hasn’t covered himself in glory in how negotiations have progressed.
“He’s just signed a five year deal in January, becoming the highest paid player at the club. You can understand the fans’ frustration”, he continued.
“The club has made him the player that he is, remember how he was struggling at Inter Milan. The least he can do is give the club another year.”