Philippe Coutinho will not be making his long-awaited return to Liverpool when they take on Manchester City this afternoon.
Jurgen Klopp confirmed in his pre-match press conference that the Brazilian would not feature, but he seemed delighted nonetheless that he can still count the playmaker among his ranks.
The Reds have done remarkably well to resist Barcelona's advances and keep hold of Coutinho.
The 25-year-old was the subject of three bids and eventually handed in a transfer request, such was his desperation to move to the Nou Camp.
Having made it no secret that he felt his time at Anfield was up, it could have been quite awkward for him when he returned to the club at the end of the international break.
Nonetheless, Klopp has revealed that there are no such problems in the dressing room, as Liverpool's players all understood his desire to join the Blaugrana.
Barca may be in disarray off the pitch right now after the departure of Neymar and their highly questionable transfer activity this summer, but most players would still have a hard time turning them down.
Liverpool players understood
"Do I think that somebody could have (a problem)?" the German said, per the Liverpool Echo.
“Most of them [the players] are friends for many years. There was nothing. We spoke about it and it has nothing to do with the team, that is very important for all of us, it is nothing to do with fans and all that stuff.
“100% if a club like Barcelona is around then nobody says ‘are you crazy, what do you want to go there for?’.
“Everyone has this little bit of understanding and think ‘okay, it’s Barcelona’ – it is not that he wants to go to Everton.
“Then it would have been different, I would say. (Everton are) another wonderful club but it’s a different situation.”
Even if Barca renew their interest in the attacking midfielder next summer or in January, Liverpool should still get the benefit of him for the next few months at least.
Judging by their three Premier League games this season, he's going to be part of an unreal attack when he does finally reappear.
Should Liverpool have cashed in on Coutinho? Have your say in the comments.
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