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Rodgers eager to protect Coutinho from expectations

ESPN staff
April 29, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Philippe Coutinho has impressed for Liverpool © PA Photos
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Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has warned against putting too much expectation on Philippe Coutinho.

The Brazilian playmaker created two goals in an impressive performance to help his team to a 6-0 Premier League win at Newcastle on Saturday.

Coutinho has become a regular since arriving from Inter Milan for £8 million in January, starting each of Liverpool's last nine league games, and scoring twice.

But Rodgers wants to build up the 20-year-old slowly, and is wary of hyping him up.

The manager told the club's official website: "We build up players in the country and put them on a pedestal and then quickly nail them down.

"He's had an outstanding performance and people can see why we brought him in. He's 20 years of age and fits the culture of what we're trying to do here.

"He's technically strong and he's a very humble boy. He works hard, you can see the effort in his game, the pressure, the intensity, so he fits in really well, but there's a long way to go.

"If you look at the stats you'll see I haven't eased him in gently. He's played nearly every game."

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