Klopp rules out Liverpool return for Coutinho

EXCLUSIVE: Klopp rules out Coutinho Liverpool return (1:31)

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp tells ESPN FC's Melissa Reddy that re-signing Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona would take "big, big money" and "it's not our year for that." (1:31)

NEW YORK -- Jurgen Klopp has ruled out a Liverpool return for Philippe Coutinho, telling ESPN FC he hopes the midfielder "finds his luck at Barcelona."

The 27-year-old left Anfield for Camp Nou in a £142 million deal in January 2018, but has found it exceedingly difficult to cement a starting spot in the centre of the park for La Liga's champions or win over their fans.

Barcelona are already looking to offload their most expensive signing, with Coutinho's agent Kia Joorabchian accusing the Catalan club of providing mixed messages for his client.

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Liverpool have been an easy and obvious link given Coutinho's four-and-a-half happy years on Merseyside before his aggressive push, which included handing in a transfer request that was rejected in the summer of 2017, to join Barcelona.

And while Klopp greatly appreciates the Brazil international as a player and person, he will not sanction a massive outlay to re-sign him.

"In general, Phil Coutinho helps each team in the world, still -- 100%," Klopp told ESPN FC during an exclusive interview in New York during Liverpool's pre-season tour. "It's not about that. I like Phil, I think he's a fantastic footballer and all that stuff, but it would be a big, big, big, big, big, big, big, big-money signing and it's not our year for that.

"It's just not possible. As I said, having him would make each team better -- us included -- but I really hope that he finds his luck at Barcelona.

"Or maybe he found it there. We have contact, but not that close contact that I know exactly how he is doing, but the rest is only newspaper talk and stuff like that.

"If everything was true what newspapers write about me -- wow! If it's similar to what they write about me, I would say he's completely happy at Barcelona and wants to sign a new six-year contract or whatever."

ESPN FC also understands that Liverpool have not considered a loan deal for Coutinho, who scored 54 goals in 201 appearances for the club following his £8.5m transfer from Inter Milan in January 2013.

The European champions are expected to do minimal business this summer, with their policy of player retention being paramount.

Liverpool plays the last of their three match pre-season tour of the U.S. against Sporting CP at Yankee Stadium on July 24.