Coutinho Liverpool's 'next big thing' - Gerrard

Philippe Coutinho is now Liverpool's go-to man as the club seek to return to former glories, according to outgoing captain Steven Gerrard.

Steven Gerrard feels Philippe Coutinho is ready to take on the mantle of Liverpool's talisman after being the club's shining light in a disappointing season.

Liverpool have failed to qualify for the UEFA Champions League after being eliminated in this season's group stages, as well as losing in the semi-finals of both the FA Cup and League Cup.

Coutinho, though, has been in excellent form throughout the campaign and unsurprisingly swept the board at Liverpool's end-of-season awards on Tuesday.

Coutinho took home the Goal of the Year, Performance of the Year, Players' Player of the Year and Player of the Year awards.

Departing captain Gerrard was honoured with a special 'Outstanding Achievement' prize at the ceremony, and used his acceptance speech to hail Brazil playmaker Coutinho.

"I'm a bit bored of making all these speeches, so I want to pay tribute to Philippe - this is his night," said the former England skipper.

"He cleaned up all the awards and deservedly so. He's the next big thing for me.

"I hope he stays for a long time and helps us win some more trophies."