Coutinho will only get better, says Lucas

The 26-year-old believes the January signing from Inter has shone since his arrival, and has credited the Reds’ contingent of South American players with helping him adapt

Lucas Leiva has heaped praise on Liverpool winger Philippe Coutinho and insists there is even more still to come from the young Brazilian.

The 20-year-old arrived at Anfield after a frustrating spell at Inter, where he struggled to hold down a regular place in the starting XI and was loaned out to La Liga side Espanyol.

But, since his move to Merseyside, he has become one of Liverpool’s chief architects going forward, recording five assists and two goals in his first 10 games, and Lucas has praised his countryman’s impact.

“Philippe is a young player but he has got a lot of experience because he spent two years in Italy and six months in Spain so he knows how things work in Europe,” Lucas said in the official matchday programme.

“Of course the Premier League is a different league but he has been fantastic for us since he came.

“For sure, he will only get better because he is very young and works very hard.

“We are just delighted that he came here and is having the chance to show his quality. That is maybe what he didn’t have in Italy with Inter.”

According to his Brazilian compatriot, Coutinho’s seamless adaptation to the Premier League has been helped along by the presence of a small contingent of fellow South Americans at Melwood.

Lucas added: “He has settled quickly and has myself, [Sebastian] Coates and [Luis] Suarez to help him feel comfortable and understand a bit more. I’m sure the fans are really looking forward to seeing a full season from him next year just as I am.”

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