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Philippe Coutinho has handed in a transfer request at Liverpool

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Steven Gerrard

Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho has reportedly handed in a transfer request after the club released a statement on Friday morning stating that he would be remaining at the club beyond the summer.

However, Liverpool-based journalist James Pearce was quick to refute the claim, taking to Twitter to insist that the club were adamant the player had not requested to leave.

But Liverpool know that even if Barcelona return with a third bid in excess of 100 million pounds, it is probably too late for them to spend the money sensibly.

Liverpool have rejected Philippe Coutinho's transfer request after he told them of his desire to move to Barcelona, Sky sources understand.

"He has tremendous love for the club and its fans but, like Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez have pointed out in the past, Liverpool does not let its players leave on amicable terms".

Also on Friday, a statement released to Sky Sports News, which was said to be from one of Coutinho's close family members, was read out on the channel.

While we do understand that Coutinho is a major transfer target for Barcelona, the recent developments clearly make it hard to suggest if the the Brazilian is indeed replacing Neymar at Barca.

Instead, they had upped the ante less than 24 hours before their Premier League opener against Watford, a game for which manager Juergen Klopp said the Brazilian was injured.

"No price at which we are ready to give in".

In a statement on Friday, the club's owners said its "definitive stance" was that "no offers will be considered".

'Our goal is to have the best possible team. That is set in stone. "So what they pay in the end doesn't matter".

Coutinho will not travel to Vicarage Road this weekend and is also a doubt for the first leg of Liverpool's Champions League play-off against Hoffenheim on Tuesday.

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