Barcelona don’t want to be humiliated over Philippe Coutinho. Or, at least more humiliated over Philippe Coutinho. At least that’s the line from ESPN’s Barca correspondent Sam Marsden when discussing the issue with The Echo’s Blood Red podcast.
“The problem is they paid so much for him, and have invested so much into him, that they don’t want to take a big hit,” Marsden explains. “At the moment the official line is he’s not for sale.
“But unofficially there are whispers that if Manchester United, Chelsea, Bayern Munich or whoever it may be, came in during the summer and tested Barcelona with a bid, maybe of around £100m, then maybe the club would think now is the right time to cut their losses.
“As for Liverpool, I don’t have any insight from their point of view, but if they did come in with a bid it would almost be like Barca would be put off by selling him back to the club where they bought him from.
“Even if Liverpool were to match the same price that another club was prepared to pay, it almost feels like Barcelona would have been had off.”
I guess there isn’t really anything to see here that isn’t glaringly obvious to anyone. Of course Barcelona feel as if they’ve been “had” by Liverpool. They always were going to be under the circumstances (mid-season swoop, new contract, an extremely talented footballer who doesn’t quite possess the unique skills to be either a central midfielder or a winger, etc).
And if Coutinho were to leave the Nou Camp after his rather unsuccessful stint, especially for a sizeable discount, that would be quite embarrassing. Selling him back to Liverpool for said discount would be an even worse look for the Catalan giants.
Many Liverpool fans would be fully on board with bringing Couts back to Merseyside. I’m fully in the “no way, no how” camp, being on record (several times) about how I think he makes the Reds a worse footballing outfit.
I say that Phil might as well go all the way with this one. Let United pay £100 million for him, completing Coutinho’s transformation from “darling of the Kop” to “mortal enemy.” Added bonus? Watching him pump shots from distance into Row Z for Manchester United.