Ian Wright believes Liverpool could kill two birds with one stone if they acted positively in the transfer market – with the signing of a top-class defender convincing Philippe Coutinho to stay.
The Reds talisman continues to be linked with a big-money move to Barcelona, with reports on Friday suggesting the club are ready to pursue a deal for the Brazilian ahead of Lionel Messi’s preferred choice of Javier Pastore.
However, Wright believed Liverpool could yet persuade Coutinho to stay – and reckons signing Virgil van Dijk or Toby Alderweireld during the January transfer window would convince him he can taste trophy success at Anfield.
Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, Wright said: “It would be a shame for Coutinho to miss out on going to Barcelona. That’s why players will understand why he was under pressure to force a move.
“If he doesn’t get to go there, Liverpool have to do something [in January].
“Liverpool have to be going big for Van Dijk and Alderweireld. That’s the kind of thing that will make Coutinho go, ‘OK, I get it now’.
“They’ve have an offensive line that can challenge. They need to do it in terms of the defensive line. If they’re going to do it, they need to go for those two guys.”