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Why Barcelona shouldn't go back for Philippe Coutinho

A look at whether the club should return for the Brazilian

Brazil v Equador - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Qualifier Photo by Lucas Uebel/Getty Images

The transfer window this summer was a spectacle for Barcelona, in a very special and different way. Barcelona usually make the summer interesting, but it's mostly in a positive way. They're on the forefront of getting hot new prospects and finding out ways to improve their squad. This summer was a bit different in both feel and results.

It obviously started with the sale of Neymar to PSG, and the entire aftermath that came with it. But the second key storyline to Barcelona's summer was the attempted purchase of Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool. Attempted is the key word here, because the somewhat unimaginable happened. Liverpool kept resisting Barcelona's offers of Coutinho that ended up getting near 150 million. It was stunning to see happening on two levels.

The first was that Liverpool were able to keep saying no to that money. It just made sense for them to sell Coutinho at that number. He's a valuable player for their squad, but how Liverpool would be able to re-invest 150 million into their organization was unimaginable. Yet, they kept Barcelona at bay.

The second reason it was stunning, was that Barcelona were pretty clearly wanting to overpay for Coutinho. In a summer where everyone was overpaying for players, it never sat right that Barcelona were willing to climb that high for Coutinho. His talent and skill were amazing, but the injury history, age, and future development all screamed that Barcelona were overpaying for his services.

Liverpool v Middlesbrough - Premier League Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

From the Barcelona side, I believe it will end up being a good thing that they weren't able to get Coutinho for that absurd amount. But as the transfer window closed, business finally died down, and for some reason the Coutinho rumors continued on.

There were reports that Liverpool wanted €200 million for Coutinho, then they denied the claim. The drama continued with reports that Coutinho was in "anguish" over the lack of a transfer. All of this after Barcelona had reportedly four bids turned down by Liverpool over the summer.

Needless to say, it was all a bit dramatic and odd for a transfer. Usually the smaller club acts like they won’t give in, and then once the money is outrageous it happens. Liverpool did what most other clubs wouldn't have done in that situation. Wise or not, they stood strong on keeping Coutinho, and for some reason Barcelona are standing strong on still wanting him according to reports.

The club isn’t being helped by the fact that outside parties keep up the chatter around Coutinho’s seemingly imminent Barcelona arrival. Brazilian and Barcelona legend Ronaldinho chimed in with his two cents on the matter, and he thinks that Coutinho will end up on Barcelona.

“He made it clear that he wanted to join Barcelona this summer - he will be disappointed as it is a dream for players to want to play for Barcelona - but I am sure he will still get that chance.”

“They made it clear how much they wanted him and I am sure they will come back for him.”

“This season they will see him give everything for the club - that is the sort of player he is.”

“Also no player is going to refuse to play when it's the World Cup at the end of the season.”

“The Liverpool fans have nothing to worry about - I do not believe any of the stories about him refusing to play for the club. I know him and that is not his way.”

Ronaldinho | DailyMail

So perhaps I’m alone on the island of believing that Barcelona shouldn’t continue to pursue Philippe Coutinho. Age, injury history, the player’s fit in Barcelona’s squad moving forward are all reasons I believe Barcelona should set their sights elsewhere this January and next summer. They’re a team in a precarious situation with Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta not signing contract extensions yet, and they need to be wise with the moves they make.

Should Barcelona keep up their Coutinho pursuit?


Should Barcelona continue to pursue Philippe Coutinho? Assume the price is the reported 150 million.

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