1 Nov 2016

Legend claims: 'Big clubs' are chasing £40m Liverpool star, and his 'agent is working extra hard'

Philippe Coutinho reportedly wants to quit Anfield for Barcelona, and Reds legend Phil Thompson insists the Brazilian is good enough for the Catalan club.

Over the weekend, Spanish newspaper Sport claimed:

"Coutinho would like to play for Barcelona. His agents sounded out the possibility last year.".

Responding to that report, Thommo insisted:

"You could see him [Coutinho] fitting in the Barca team. He has that much ability. All the big Spanish clubs are chasing him, so his agent has been working extra hard in the last couple of weeks."

Spanish football expert Guillem Balague has a different view, though, and in a recent interview, he claimed:

"He [Coutino] is not Barcelona material. He is miles away from being a Barcelona player. He has a lot of potential, but in that department they are sorted."

Along with Thommo, several other big names disagree with Balague:

* May 2015: Ronaldinho told the Daily Mail: "I know what Barcelona look for and [Coutinho] has those qualities. They'd be the perfect fit".

* Aug 2015: Luis Suarez enthused: "My favourite player in the Premier League is Philippe Coutinho".

* Sep 2015: Neymar told ESPN: "I see many Brazilian players with quality, but one that I like and I think could play here is Coutinho. He has the style of Barcelona."

Possible Barca lineup with Coutinho:

--------------- ter Stegen
Mascherano - Umtiti - Pique --- Alba
-- Rakitic --- Busquets --- Coutinho
------ Messi -- Suarez - Neymar

The question is, will Coutinho be a regular starter (in place of, say, Iniesta), or will he be used as a back-up for Messi and Neymar?

^ Coutinho: £40m-rated. Hailed over the weekend by Dejan Lovren as 'outstanding'



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