7 Oct 2014

Aldo blasts: £20m LFC star is 'horribly off the boil' & it's a 'major concern'. Agree?

Since arriving at Anfield, Brendan Rodgers' has struggled in the transfer market, and as I regularly argue, only two of his twenty-three buys - Coutinho and Sturridge - have proven to be bona-fide success stories. Well, it looks like Rodgers' hit-rate will have to be revised, as Coutinho is no longer delivering the goods, and Anfield legend John Aldridge has urged Rodgers to prioritise the Brazilian's development.

In his column yesterday for Sunday World, Aldo argued that Coutinho's alarming fall from grace is a 'major concern', adding:

"He was outstanding last season, but he has been horribly off the boil over the first few games of this campaign and Rodgers needs to look at how he can get him back on song".

Coutinho was 'outstanding' last season? I disagree. He had patches of decent form, but overall, he failed (IMO) to kick on from his excellent first six months at the club.

Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez carried Liverpool last season, with Sterling, Henderson, Skrtel, and Gerrard also key players in the Reds' memorable push for the title. Coutinho played his part, but, in my view, if he wasn't in the team last season, the Reds still would've gone close to winning the league.

This season, Coutinho's lack of consistent influence is glaringly apparent. Suarez and Sturridge aren't around to paper over the cracks, and the pressure is on for the Brazilian pick up the slack, but so far, he isn't rising to the challenge.

The question is, why? For me, one of the key issues is Sturridge's absence. Sturridge and Coutinho work really well together, and he is always an outlet for the clever defence-splitting passes favoured by the Brazilian.

Balotelli and Lambert are more static than Sturridge, so it makes it harder for Coutinho to make an impact in the same manner. Granted, that's just one small aspect of his overall game-play; right now, nothing else seems to be working, either.

Whether it's shots from distance, intricate build-up play, or key passes, Coutinho is struggling to effect games, and his stats are star indicator of just how badly he is under-performing:

* 0 goals/assists (all competitions)
* No shots on target.
* Only 4 chances created all season.
* Only one successful cross.

So, what's the problem? It's definitely not a lack of positive reinforcement/ego massage. Rodgers constantly praises Coutinho, and in September, he insisted that he has 'no qualms' about his ability to succeed at Anfield. He told reporters:

"He has lit up the Premier League since he came to the club. There's no doubt he has the power, the pace or the strength, because he's shown [that] in games. He's very conscious that I have absolutely no doubts about him."

That's all well and good, but at some point, Coutinho has to start delivering, or he may find himself perennially warming the bench. Luckily for him, Lazar Markovic is not providing much of a challenge for his position, but that may change over the next few months.

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37 comments:

  1. His best moments last season were when he provided Suarez and Studge, after they made their runs, they are no longer available to him, hence his form has slumped. He is still a Kiddo, give him time.

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  2. I agree with you.... to a point.... Isn't it a little early to include the summer signings in your list of failed transfers.... If I were to say Moreno and Lallana have started well you would probably say they haven't played enough yet to prove it.
    Also... although 5 goals and 7 assists isn't legendary there is no doubt for people who watch football instead of obsessing with stats that his pace, pressing, dribbling and incisive passing were all a part of last seasons success. The amount of menacing players Liverpool had on the pitch last season frightens opposition teams and ultimately was our key strength.

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  3. the lack of options when he is on the ball and the fact that the midfield provided little offensively to give him some space to work has been problematic for him, but with lallana starting to show his qualities and sturridge returning i really believe he ll get better as the season goes on.


    i feel like his positioning was too deep in some games, being asked to move the ball around while sterling was the one given more freedom to influence the game.

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  4. I think Coutinho is still a little magician but he currently has no movement in front of him he has Bola who has the physical attributes of a Usian Bolt but currently the movement of a fridge and Lambert with less mobility and pace.

    I feel Coutinho rushes his decisions in the final third at times and get frustrated when his passes/shots don't come off. He should watch Silver who rarely takes wild long range shots but seems to always have the time and space to make the right decision. He also plays it simple at times and doesn't try the Hollywood pass all the time same goes for the likes of Modric. Ultimately I think went Studge is back I think Coutinho's game will improve along with his confidence.

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  5. But players like Lallana and even Gerrard are still able to find opportunities with the same players in front of them

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  6. Agree with all that mate

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  7. I have so much time for Coutinho, he is an absolutely wonderful player, and I imagine a joy to work with. Unfortunately, he too frequently reminds us why we were able to prise him from Inter for only 8M - it's that lack of consistency. Unfortunately, like Mignolet, he seems to lack that arrogance necessary to become truly world class. Hopefully one day they both will develop it.

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  8. Difference between them is that Coutinho will probably get the time to develop that arrogance, Mignolet probably won't.

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  9. you sir get an upvote just for the balotelli fridge comparison

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  10. I agree, but that's due to the nature of the positions they play. If Coutinho has a bad day, our attack will be less potent, but we may still win. If Mignolet has a bad day, then unless we can emulate the goal-scoring prowess of last season, we lose.

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  11. I think the movement up front has been no were near last season so coutinho ant Gerrard are struggling a bit but wen Sturridge is back I think this will change

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  12. I think once Allen is fit Coutinho is going to find himself as little more than a squad player. Unless of course he starts to find some better form. I think Liverpool's best 3 man midfield is Gerrard, Henderson and Allen with Lallana and Sterling part of a 3 man attack alongside a lone striker. If Liverpool go back to two strikers and a diamond then Allen might get dropped with Lallana playing further back and Sterling at the tip. Coutinho has no place in those two options.

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  13. I think we are going to see lot of Lucas now...Gerrard will be playing in a more attacking role and Lucas/Allen/Can will rotate at the back. Coutinho will have to compete with Gerrard and Lallana now.

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  14. Both further along in their careers. Both will have played with many different kind of player and Cout will learn too. I personally think he had a good game at the weekend. Not spectacular but better than he is given credit for. Sterling too. When players have performed at such a high level we may expect too much.

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  15. I agree completely. It does surprise me though, given BR's claim he has adaptable players, that the midfielders don't seem able to alter their play to suit Balotelli and play fast balls to his feet instead of through balls. .

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  16. It's an odd one with Coutinho...I was never that confident when we signed him due to his size and lack of strength but clearly that's not it as he has shown himself capable.

    I think it might be a number of things in your list Jamie. Lack of confidence and lack of quality players around him is one.

    I still don't know what his best position is, definitely not on the wings.

    He is just very inconsistent and I don't think he has stringed 5 consistent performances in one go since he arrived.

    He needs to score a goal or a nice assist to build his confidence. It's amazing what low confidence can do to a player. I should know, played terribly last night :/

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  17. I would regard Coutinho as a success even if he never performs again because by your measure Jaimie, a player would be a success if he contributes to the team and he has done that. He was instrumental with Sturridge in getting us back on track during all the changes and scored some important goals. He has been a success and should be remembered as one if he ever does leave. I still think he is not being utilised correctly and is playing too deep to play his passes.

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  18. I keep reminding myself of the game against Newcastle a couple of seasons ago. we won 0-6, Coutinho destroyed them. Form is temporary, class is permanent.

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  19. It's an unfortunate truth but I think you're right. However Sterling can't play every game and as we've already seen this season, injury will play a part so he should get plenty of games throughout the season

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  20. That is the whole point of the squad and why BR made so many signing in the summer. Sterling is clearly getting burned out and I think he should be rested against QPR.


    Mignolet
    Manquillo-Lovren-Skrtel-Moreno
    Gerrard
    Henderson-Lallana
    Coutinho
    Sturridge-Balotelli


    I think we will see Coutinho's best in that position.

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  21. Cheers mate. That's doing fridges an injustice though...

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  22. That was temporary.

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  23. I am sure Gerrard will be playing further forward, no place for Coutinho.

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  24. I think Rodgers should go with balls against QPR again. Play Rossiter as dm, Gerrard behind Sturidge with Lallana and Hendo on the flanks of a diamond.Markovic and Lukas coming in for Gerrard and more tired one between Hendo and Lallana as soon as we are on 2 goals difference,

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  25. Hope you are wrong, but Andy was asking for it..

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  26. Even if Couts flops he did his job for a year and we brought Lallana on time so...

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  27. Fast ball to a player feet means give him the ball and he will make something out of it, and not even the best attacker in the world played like that(that much), it was about movement...

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  28. John Aldridge is spot on "PC is horribly off the boil".He's gone from being inconsistent to consistently having zero impact on matches.
    It's funny how Coutinho recently got back in the Brazil squad, but it coincides with very bad form in a Liverpool shirt.When he was playing well for us he was ignored.
    We know he's got the keys to unlock defenses but it's worrying to know he desperately needs Daniel Sturridge back to stop his game from looking like garbage.
    Coutinho is playing like trash but he's got too much quality for it to be a long term problem.

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  29. I do not think he will play there the entire game. Maybe just for the last 30 minutes.

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  30. I like it but do not think Gerrard will be fully deployed there. But, if it does happen, I would prefer Rossiter to Lucas at DM for sure. If not, then my team seems the best option I feel.

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  31. Did Rogers say anything on the Gerrard topic after the game?

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  32. Coutinho has made the Barzil Int squad again. He is a fantastic player and one we should without a doubt retain.

    Are we going to find another player of the same caliber at £8m?

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  33. After the world cup Ash's Nan could make the Brazil squad.

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  34. Agreed. He definitely tries too hard to produce a wonder through ball as if he is the only one capable, when sometimes he simply needs to keep the ball moving quickly and pick up another position which Silva does constantly. He never seems to stop moving across the lines,

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