3 realistic destinations for Philippe Coutinho in the summer
After enduring a pretty unsuccessful loan spell at Bayern Munich, Philippe Coutinho will be once again forced to consider his options in the summer as he looks to rediscover his Liverpool form. The Brazilian was once tipped for greatness at Barcelona when a dream move became a reality. However, since leaving Liverpool, Coutinho's career has been more like a nightmare with spells on the bench for both Barcelona and Bayern Munich affecting the confidence of the former Premier League star.
By contrast, Liverpool have excelled since his exit, winning 3 trophies including a Champions League, and are on course for their first ever Premier League title. Although, despite finding success without him, Liverpool are among several clubs linked with Coutinho who would add to an already unstoppable Liverpool side. With that being said, here are 3 realistic destinations for Coutinho in the summer.
#3 Paris Saint-Germain
Before a £125 million move to Barcelona, Coutinho was also linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) where he would link up with international compatriots, Neymar and Thiago Silva. However, as it turns out, a move to Barcelona was one that Coutinho could not resist as he turned down the advances of PSG and the chance to join his Brazilian teammates. But this move could still, in fact, happen with Barcelona likely to offload one Brazilian for another in the summer and swap Coutinho for Neymar.
This would be a suitable deal for both clubs with PSG getting an adequate replacement for Neymar whilst Barcelona would finally get to see the return of their once star forward. What's more, a move to PSG would mean a debut in one of the only two top 6 leagues the former Liverpool man hasn't played in with the Eredivisie in Holland being the other one.
#2 Inter Milan
With the likes of Ashley Young, Romelu Lukaku, and Christian Eriksen now playing for Inter Milan, the Italian side has become the place to be for former Premier League players who are in desperate need of a career revival. And whilst playing under Antonio Conte, Coutinho would get exactly that with Conte's similar intensity to that of Jurgen Klopp potentially getting the best out of the Brazilian.
Moreover, Coutinho would be in familiar surroundings at Inter after playing at the San Siro for 5 years of which he spent a large portion on loan to Vasco da Gama and Espanyol, before leaving to the Premier League in 2013. A move back to where it all started in Europe for Coutinho could well be exactly what his career needs as he looks to rediscover his once golden touch. However, one thing that may stand in the way of this move is the hefty price tag set by Barcelona for the Brazilian midfielder which could see Inter tack a step back from a potential move.
With a record-breaking Premier League title win on the cards for Liverpool this season, Jürgen Klopp will be looking to further add to an already incredible team ahead of their first-ever Premier League title defence next season. And what better way to add to a squad than the return of a former star player. Philippe Coutinho would fit straight back into the Liverpool midfield, adding creative spark and perhaps getting rid of Liverpool's only weakness in the process.
However, two things that stand in the way of this transfer are money and the Liverpool fans. The Liverpool fans may react negatively to his return to the Liverpool squad after the way the midfielder exited the Merseyside club in 2018. This would affect the near-perfect atmosphere at the club and potentially do damage to their title defence.
Adding to this, Barcelona's price tag of around £77 million would pose a problem for this transfer as Liverpool may not want to pay such as high price for a player who's not exactly in the form of his life, making the transfer a risky one and a potential flop.
To conclude, Coutinho will be desperate to once again prove himself on the biggest of stages which could see him move to the likes of PSG, Liverpool or even go full circle and go back to Inter Milan this summer. Either way, any club that lands the signing of Philippe Coutinho will have themselves a bargain if he were to return to his Liverpool form which made him one of the best players around.
Published 11 Feb 2020, 10:28 IST