Coutinho stunner clinches Asia Trophy for Liverpool

Coutinho stunner clinches Asia Trophy for Liverpool
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah scores their first goal against Leicester City on Saturday.

Hong Kong - Salah had already demonstrated during the preseason that the club record $45 million Klopp paid Roma for his services looks money well spent



By AFP/AP

Published: Sat 22 Jul 2017, 10:14 PM

Last updated: Sun 23 Jul 2017, 12:23 AM

A moment of Philippe Coutinho magic lifted Liverpool to a 2-1 victory over Leicester City in the final of the preseason Premier League Asia Trophy on Saturday.
With Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp rejecting a big-money offer from Spanish giants Barcelona for Coutinho earlier this week, the mercurial Brazilian underlined his important to the Reds with a flash of individual brilliance in Hong Kong.
The 25-year-old picked the ball up on the left of the area on the stroke of halftime, jinked his way inside and let fly with a superb right-foot strike that proved to be the game-winner.
Coutinho had earlier played the role of provider for new signing Mohamed Salah, dinking the ball on to the Egyptian's head to cancel out Islam Slimani's 12th-minute nodded opener.
Salah had already demonstrated during the preseason that the club record $45 million Klopp paid Roma for his services looks money well spent.
His pace adding another dimension to Liverpool's attack, the former Chelsea winger gave Leicester's Christian Fuchs a torrid time until he was substituted on 65 minutes.
Klopp, whose side beat Crystal Palace 2-0 in midweek to reach the final, is still hoping to bring in Leipzig midfielder Nabi Keita, with Liverpool set to return with a final offer of around $97 million for the Guinea international.
Palace won the third-place playoff earlier on Saturday, seeing off West Brom 2-0 in a testy affair that saw a heated exchange between players as they entered the tunnel at halftime.
The match was settled by Luka Milivojevic's sweetly struck free kick on 11 minutes and a deflected Bakary Sako shot that found the net with three minutes left in the first half.
Meanwhile, Liverpool signed left back Andy Robertson from Hull on Friday, filling a problematic position for the English Premier League team and continuing a stunning rise to prominence for the Scotland international.
 The 23-year-old Robertson reportedly moved to Anfield for a fee that could rise to 10 million pounds ($13 million).
 Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp played James Milner, a central midfielder, as a makeshift left back last season, preferring him to Alberto Moreno.
 Just four years ago, Robertson was playing on a part-time basis for Queen's Park in the Scottish leagues and working in a supermarket. Next season, he'll be playing in the Champions League.
 "For Andrew, this is another big step on what has been a quite incredible personal journey in a very short space of time," Klopp said. "I love his story, where he has come from professionally to reach this point."
 Hull was relegated from the Premier League last season. Also, Chelsea sent center back Kurt Zouma on loan to Stoke for the whole of next season, after tying the France international to a new six-year deal.


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