Coutinho responds to Liverpool star's fond farewell

Riyad Mahrez

GETTY Riyad Mahrez has been touted as Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho replacement

The versatile midfielder's exploits were enough to earn him a move to Liverpool, but on the condition that he waited until the end of this season.

Liverpool are respectful of Leipzig's position, but will continue with their efforts, although Leipzig coach Ralph Hasenhuttl suggested on Thursday that Keita would not be allowed to go until the summer.

Liverpool's fans have already expressed their excitement regarding the prospect of Keita arriving at the club, with the energy and dynamism offered by the African set to bring another dimension to Jurgen Klopp's midfield.

Philippe Coutinho won't be missed by Liverpool, according to his former teammate Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

To suddenly have Van Dijk, Keita and Roberto Firmino down the centre of the pitch, with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane also in the team, would give Liverpool a truly formidable spine for the first time in years.

Liverpool need to replace Philippe Coutinho as soon as possible in the January transfer window.

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A deal is already in place to take Naby Keita to Anfield next season, but Jurgen Klopp is said to be keen to add the Guinean global to his side ahead of schedule.

Liverpool rejected repeated bids in August but finally gave into Coutinho's demands to leave after sealing a transfer deal worth up to 160 million euros ($192 million), making the Brazilian playmaker Barcelona's costliest ever signing.

There is no suggestion that home-grown Kane is agitating for a move, with the club on the verge of moving to a new stadium but Levy sounds confident he can keep the circling sharks at bay.

And there were some Liverpool supporters who thought it was official confirmation that Leipzig had agreed to sell Keita this month.

Gomez is the latest in this list and the Argentine, who has been in fine form for Atalanta this season, would be open to a move to Anfield.

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