Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has already forgot about Luis Suarez making his £75million move to Barcelona and believes that Philippe Coutinho is the brains behind the team, according to the Daily Mail.
Coutinho started in The Reds' 1-0 defeat to AS Roma last night and he cut through the Italian side's back four on several occasions. His performance was clearly welcomed by Rodgers, who praised his performance on the night and his career at Liverpool, revealing he has big plans for the Brazilian.
"Coutinho is the brain in our team, the continuity player.He might not score many goals, but he's a wonderful reference for the team," the Northern Irishman said.
"He is the one that gets the team ticking, gets the movement in front of the ball. He goes and gets on the ball. He's a fantastic talent for such a young player and he's still gaining his fitness.
"He makes the crowd get off their seat. For someone so small, he's very tough and robust. He's a wonderful technician that has a great idea, tactically, of the game."
New role for Coutinho?
Rodgers experimented with Coutinho in the friendly by playing the 22-year-old in a slightly deeper role than he usually appears in. He seemed to take to the role well and it looked like the Liverpool boss could be testing whether he could fill captain Steven Gerrard's boots for the inevitable games he will miss in the forthcoming campaign. After all, he is still a youngster and could be nurtured into the role.
Rodgers' comments also question the amount of playing time £25million signing Adam Lallana will be handed this season. He plays a similar role to Coutinho just behind the strikers and likes to cut through defences with through balls and clever trickery on the ball.
Lallana to play second-fiddle?
There has been a debate on who would be first on the team-sheet between the pair and by the manager's claims it looks like Coutinho is ahead.
Nonetheless, Lallana has only been with the squad for a matter of days and has yet to make his debut his new side. If he impresses in the upcoming games against Olympiacos, Manchester City, AC Milan and Borussia Dortmund, he could quickly change his new boss' plans for the future.
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