John Aldridge insists that Philippe Coutinho will “flourish” against Manchester United, if Adam Lallana is sidelined through injury.
Lallana has been superb this season, cementing his status as a key component of Liverpool’s high-energy starting XI.
Indeed, he has dramatically improved under the tutelage of Jurgen Klopp, notching three goals and three assists in the Premier League this term.
However, the England international suffered a groin injury while playing for Liverpool against Swansea City earlier this month, meaning he is a doubt for the upcoming meeting with United.
As such, Coutinho could potentially move to a central role – as he did at the Liberty Stadium – in Lallana’s absence.
Reds legend Aldridge believes that would be of benefit to the Merseyside giants, who host United on Monday evening.
Aldridge wrote for the Liverpool Echo: “If Adam Lallana isn’t fit for the visit of United then I’d play Philippe Coutinho in that advanced central midfield role and start Daniel Sturridge up front.
“Coutinho changed the game against Swansea when he moved into the middle. It’s a freer role for him compared to when he’s out on the left where his influence can be a bit limited at times.
“The Brazilian found pockets of space to hurt Swansea and was able to really express himself. Being without Lallana would be a blow but Coutinho can certainly flourish in that position.”
Liverpool approach the crunch clash with their arch-rivals in brilliant form, having strung together five successive victories across the Premier League and EFL Cup.