Guillem Balague has said that it is unlikely for Barcelona or Real Madrid to come in for Philippe Coutinho anytime soon.
Liverpool shot to the top of the Premier League this weekend as Philippe Coutinho, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino put on yet another fine attacking display which saw Watford concede six goals.
Arguably Liverpool’s finest performer on the afternoon was Philippe Coutinho with the Brazilian following up on his Player of the Month award with a goal and assist to take his Premier League goal contribution tally to 10 for the season.
Naturally, the diminutive midfielder’s performances are drawing a lot of attention and in the last few weeks there has been a lot speculation that his brilliant form could see him shortlisted for a move to either the Camp Nou or the Santiago Bernabeu.
Keeping that in mind, highly respected journo Guillem Balague had a few words to say about the rumours linking Coutinho with a move to Spain.
“Last time I spoke about Coutinho a few months back, I thought he wasn’t ready for Barcelona or Real Madrid,” Balague wrote on Skysports.com in response to a question asking if Barca or Madrid are interested in signing Coutinho.
“I can now see that he is the most talented player at Liverpool, he’s performing regularly, and is scoring. Yes, he is getting to that level where either Barca or Real can come for him.
“He needs a bit more glamour for Real Madrid to have big, big interest. For Barcelona, they need to decide what to do with Arda Turan, and then they have to decide whether a player like Coutinho fits in that team.
“The problem with Coutinho as a No 10, he hasn’t got a place in a Barcelona 4-3-3. He has to play wide, or play deeper, but that isn’t his role, so it’s difficult to find a place for him.
“Let’s see who the manager is at Barcelona next season, or if Luis Enrique continues, but certainly he would be so expensive that I couldn’t see Barca coming in for him just yet. At the moment, neither of them are in the equation, but let’s see how things progress.”
There’s also the fact that Liverpool are looking increasingly likely to qualify for the Champions League for next season and have an outside chance to win the Premier League, so there is every chance that Coutinho views Liverpool as enticing as Barca or Madrid.
Jurgen Klopp is working on something very special with Liverpool and Coutinho is arguably the most important player in his team, even if the German doesn’t openly admit that he has individuals who are more important than others.
I am hoping that all rumours linking Coutinho with a move elsewhere will end soon. Even if he isn’t interested in a move, it doesn’t bode well to have speculation surrounding the future of your best player. Hopefully, Coutinho isn’t looking to follow in Suarez’ footsteps for a long, long time. Or at all, for that matter.