Philippe Coutinho, 27, is currently on loan at Bayern Munich from Barcelona. Bayern had an option to sign the Brazilian playmaker on a permanent deal for €120 million. CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has now revealed to German outlet Der Spiegel that they have not taken up that option.
Philippe Coutinho Likely to Return to Barcelona
What Rummenigge Has Said
Rummenigge has revealed the clause has expired and “we haven’t activated it”. Rummenigge doesn’t completely rule out keeping Coutinho. He said: “Now we’re going to draw up squad planning internally (for next season) and we’ll see if he still has a role to play with us or not.”
Coutinho is currently injured but has played a hand in 14 goals in his 22 Bundesliga appearances. The former Liverpool midfielder continues to prove that he still possesses that creative knack to score and provide goals, something that will appeal to any team in Europe.
Leroy Sane Could Take the Number 10 shirt
It’s reported that Bayern Munich are set to offer Leroy Sane the coveted number ten shirt, currently held by Coutinho. A shirt number previously donned by Arjen Robben and Lothar Matthaus. This might indicate that Bayern have no plans to sign Coutinho permanently. And the addition of Leroy Sane will take a chunk out of what Bayern have to spend this summer.
Plenty keen on Coutinho
We’re at a point, particularly in the Premier League, where it has become a case of ‘who hasn’t?’ been linked with bringing Coutinho back to England. Chelsea, Leicester, Liverpool, Newcastle and Tottenham are all cited as interested parties. Manchester United are often thrown into the hat. There’s bound to be more interest around Europe, despite the difficult situation currently facing the world. Barcelona will probably have to accept considerably less than the €120m they had agreed with the Bundesliga leaders if they are to sell.
A return to Liverpool is liekely not to be on the cards for Coutinho. There are various reasons, including the distaste from fans at the way he left the club. It’s often comically pointed out that they won the Champions League without him. His desire to leave was to do so with Barcelona, he hasn’t yet managed it.
A romantic reunion with Brendan Rodgers at Leicester City could be on the cards, especially is say, James Maddison left the club. Rodgers has played any talk of Coutinho’s arrival down though. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen.
Tottenham is an interesting one. If they can afford to and are willing, it could be worth taking a chance. Jose Mourinho has previously hinted that he rated Philippe Coutinho quite highly when asked about how much he was really worth in 2017. Mourinho was also the coach at Inter Milan when they signed Coutinho, before he became the star that he is today. Maybe it’s meant to be.
Of course, with the current goings on in the world, it’s not out of the picture and probably more likely by the day that Coutinho stays at Barcelona. Alternatively, they could use him as makeweight to sign one of their targets, amid reports of a squad overhaul at Camp Nou.
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