Philippe Coutinho could leave Barcelona this January

Barcelona have been trying to lighten their wage bill ever since Lionel Messi was forced to leave the club due to the overly swollen wage bill at Camp Nou. As it stands, Philippe Coutinho and Samuel Umtiti are two of the highest earners at Barcelona and coincidentally, the former La Liga champions are looking for ways to part ways with the duo.

Philippe Coutinho of FC Barcelona

Coutinho was bought in the January of 2018 for a mammoth €140 million, becoming Barcelona’s most expensive buy ever. With that said, he has struggled to get going at Camp Nou and recurrent injuries have seriously derailed his once-promising career. The Brazilian talent has not been able to recreate the form that he enjoyed during his time at Liverpool, though he has shown glimpses of regaining his mojo back. Time is of the essence for Barca currently and they cannot afford to stay down for long. Coutinho’s current form is not helping the team nor are his massive wages. The club plans on bringing in immediate reinforcements for Xavi, who is said to have looked past Coutinho. 

Coutinho could return to the Premier League

The 29-year-old Brazilian midfielder has been linked with a move back to the Premier League with the likes of Arsenal, Tottenham, Newcastle, Everton, and Liverpool said to be keeping a close watch on him. Arsenal out of all, are said to be the most interested in signing the former Liverpool star, with Mikel Arteta said to have given a ‘resounding yes’ for the potential transfer to take place. The Spaniard believes that he can restore the creative best of Coutinho at Arsenal. 

Barcelona will not find it difficult to part ways with the midfielder and it will help their free up some funds, in order to launch a sizeable bid for Juve’s Matthijs De Ligt, with whom they have been linked in the past as well.

The Dutch defender’s contract is said to have included a special clause which would we see his release clause drop to €75 million (from €150 million) should Barcelona come calling. The player has also been tipped to leave the Bianconeri next summer. With that said, it will be interesting to see how Barca manage to go about signing De Ligt as selling Umtiti and Coutinho will be one of the main priorities for them, heading into the winter window. 

Barcelona have already managed to sign Ferran Torres from Manchester City for a reported sum of €55 million. Torres will be able to play for Barcelona from January and is likely to be featured in the El Classico on January 12. With their frontline looking packed for the next few years, Barca’s focus is now said to be on strengthening their defense, which has been a major source of worry for Xavi and his predecessors in recent years. 

The former La Liga champions are currently in a muddle, having been relegated to the Europa League following their UCL group-stage exit, and are now currently sitting in seventh place in the La Liga table. This is precisely why Barcelona do not have much time to be patient with their players and need immediate reinforcements. 

The Blaugrana will kick-start their 2022 against Mallorca, away from home. 

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