Jurgen Klopp believes Liverpool’s owners will stand firm and refuse to sell Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona but admits any decision is not his to make.
The Reds rejected a transfer request issued by the winger via email on Friday only hours after the club’s owners – Fenway Sports Group (FSG) – issued a statement that he would not be sold.
Sky Sports News understands Coutinho’s team-mates sympathise with the Brazil international and understand why he wants to join one of the biggest clubs in the world, but he did not take part with them in their opening-day 3-3 draw against Watford.
Asked if the transfer request had changed the club’s stance, Klopp said: “You’ll have to ask the club. I didn’t see the club today – the decisive people – but I don’t think so because I think it was pretty clear what the club, FSG, said about it.
“I can say something that is maybe a more important thing. As a manager of a football club I have bosses, and if bosses decide, for example, just in general, to sell a player or we don’t sell him, then I have to accept it.
“If they don’t sell him, then I’m not involved anymore. I’m responsible for all players, not just one, two or three.
“I cannot say anything about it. The only thing is I work with the players I have – that is what I’m always doing.”
Stefano Okaka opened the scoring for Watford as he headed in from a corner with just eight minutes gone and Abdoulaye Doucoure re-established the Hornets’ lead shortly after Sadio Mane had equalised.
Liverpool rallied and Roberto Firmino levelled from the penalty spot after debutant Mohamed Salah was fouled, with the Egypt international then edging the visitors ahead only for Miguel Britos to pounce from a late corner and give Marco Silva a positive first outing as Watford boss.
After seeing his side ship two goals from corners, Klopp said Liverpool will attempt to rectify the issue, even though he highlighted other problems he wants to address.
“They didn’t create too much with the ball but of course they scored two goals and in a specific situation where everyone will say, ‘Oh, it was a set-piece’,” Klopp said.
“We defended most of them really well, but at the end is it enough if we concede one goal? No. We have to work on it.
“But for us different things are important, the physicality in the beginning – not ready for these things. That can happen on the first match-day. No direction in the first half but much better in the second half. Playing football but it leads to nothing. There are a lot of things to work on.”