Bayern Munich have been told they are signing a player who compares to one of Italy’s finest ever stars after Jurgen Klopp talked up the qualities of their new arrival, Philippe Coutinho.
Barcelona say Bayern Munich will pay €8.5million (£7.8m) to sign Coutinho on loan for the season, as well as taking on the player’s wages, with the arrangement fixing a permanent deal for the Bundesliga champions at €120m (£109.8m) next summer.
Coutinho was presented before the media on Monday afternoon and admits he is relishing the challenge ahead in the Bundesliga.
It was claimed on Wednesday that the Brazilian had made a return to Liverpool his preference upon leaving the Nou Camp and only moved to Bayern once that avenue had been shut down.
Despite deciding against re-signing Coutinho, Liverpool manager Klopp knows Bayern are getting a special talent and claims the former Anfield favourite has a lot of similar qualities to Italian legend Alessandro Del Piero.
Klopp described the Brazilian as a “very dominant player who helps a team properly,” and “who can shape them,” though he added that “it will not be like that from day one.”
“But from the first day onwards they will get a great player,” Klopp told Kicker.
Revealing that Coutinho’s favourite position is as a No 10, Klopp added: “He was used there for Liverpool relatively rarely. That’s because we wanted him to play [as] a great No 8 and a really great left winger because he is strong in small spaces, but also fast enough for large spaces.”
Klopp continued: “[He has] an outstanding eye for the situation.
“Not since Alessandro del Piero have I seen any [player] who finishes moves from the left to the inside with the same frequency [as Coutinho].”
Klopp has already conceded that Liverpool “could not afford” to re-sign Coutinho, with reports claiming he would have cost in excess of £21million in wages and loan fees for a one-year deal as it was.
However, he told Bayern they were getting a quality player in Coutinho, concluding: “Bayern need him. Now they have to integrate and treat him so that they get the full package and then the Bundesliga has a real top player.”
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