Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has insisted he is "not concerned" about Barcelona's reported interest in the club's star midfielder Philippe Coutinho.
The Brazilian has been superb for the Reds this season and signed a new contract in 2017. Links to the La Liga giants have persisted, although the German coach has reaffirmed his belief that Coutinho will be going nowhere this summer, per Simon Mullock of the Sunday Mirror.
"I am not concerned because I think Phil fits really well here and is comfortable here," said the Liverpool manager.
"I think it is actually positive when there is interest. It shows it's good. ... But I am not concerned (about Barcelona) actually, because we give the boys enough perspective that they really want to be part of this for the next few years."
As noted by Mullock, Barca are said to have targeted the 24-year-old as part of a summer rebuild. Per WhoScored.com, the Brazilian has proved himself as a prolific operator in the Premier League:
Coutinho brings more than goals to the cause, though. Indeed, if he were to join Barcelona this summer, he would most likely play in a midfield position in support of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar.
That's because the Liverpool man is a tremendous technician. While this season he's played primarily on the left flank for the Reds, he's adept at buzzing around infield, too. If anything, Coutinho's ability to find space, play clever passes and fire off shots from distance is more prominent from a central berth.
Barcelona and Brazil star Neymar has made no secret of his admiration for his compatriot in the past, per Mundo Deportivo:
Of course, Barcelona do carry an allure, especially for players of Coutinho's style and flair. Linking up with the trio aforementioned would be an incredible opportunity, too.
Liverpool are moving in the right direction under Klopp, though, as the manager himself made clear. The Reds boss has been a positive influence on the development of the Brazilian, and with that in mind, you sense Coutinho will be happy to remain for a while yet.
Christian Pulisic Battle
"The German side don't want to lose Pulisic who is said to be happy with his development at Dortmund where he can play as a winger or more centrally," noted Bates.
"But with the bidding expected to start upwards of £30 million the temptation to sell may appeal to a club who often cash-in."
As well as the Reds and Bayern, Tottenham Hotspur are said to be keeping tabs on the 18-year-old sensation. Here's why:
Pulisic continues to impress despite his tender years. Gradually, he's cementing his place in the Dortmund XI despite an array of attacking talent in Thomas Tuchel's squad. He's proving he can perform on the biggest stage, too.
Against AS Monaco in first leg of the UEFA Champions League quarter-final tie, the United States international made a big impression off the bench in the 3-2 defeat. Football journalist Steve Davis was impressed:
Per Bates, Klopp is said to have played a role in bringing Pulisic to Dortmund during his time as manager of the Bundesliga side, so interest would be natural. Bayern, meanwhile, have made a habit of pinching star names from BVB down the years.
But Dortmund is the best place for him to continue developing, and with a new long-term deal agreed earlier in the campaign, the young forward seems content with life at the Westfalenstadion.