The Catalan giants have sent their officials to England to try and wrap up the transfer .
But Reds legend Gerrard, who is currently an academy coach at the club, believes the Brazilian will have to make things ugly if he wants to force through an exit.
“It’s very, very difficult,” he said following BT Sport’s broadcast of the European Super Cup final.
“Especially South American players who always go on record saying it’s a dream of theirs to play for Barcelona.
“I’ve experienced it before as a player and a fan with (Javier) Mascherano, with (Luis) Suarez and it’s a very, very difficult situation for a club to be in.
“The good thing from the Liverpool fans’ point of view is the manager (Jurgen Klopp) is desperate to keep hold of him and is trying to keep hold of him.
“The board want him to stay, this is not a situation where Liverpool need money or to cash in.
“We’re not a selling club so they’re gonna do everything in their power for him to stay but at the end of the day it comes down to Philippe Coutinho and his decision, what he’s prepared to do, what type of war he’s prepared to create to get out because Liverpool won’t make it easy for him.”