Patrick Tracey vents his frustration with reports emerging that Barcelona wants to sign Philippe Coutinho this season.
Okay, I’m not really someone who likes to “drop names” to tell you all the famous, beautiful people who I’ve crossed paths with.
But as I’m madly in love with both Rebecca Lowe and Nina Kauser and in the hope that either one is reading this article and thinking, “That Patrick, he’s so complex and so deep I wonder what makes him tick.” I feel I should share with you that I know Lee Hoos.
There, I let the cat out of the bag.
Actually, Lee Hoos and I have never even met in person. See, I was reading an article about Burnley FC several years ago when the writer mentioned that Mr Hoos was from Baltimore, Maryland. So I looked him up on a social media site and emailed him that he’s “from Baltimore and I’m from Baltimore and that makes you paisan.” And a deep friendship was born.
One topic that I did pick Mr Hoos’ brain on was Luis Suarez and Liverpool deciding to sell him to Barcelona. I asked him why Liverpool would do that when Suarez was the team’s best player and a replacement was nowhere to be found, and Mr Hoos responded that sometimes a player could make things uncomfortable for the club in the locker room.
I didn’t agree with Lee Hoos then and lo, these few years later, I still disagree with him now.
And the latest news about Barca getting ready to make its move to acquire Phillippe Coutinho reminded me of that email chain with Lee Hoos.
By now you’ve probably read that Coutinho’s agent has reportedly met with Barcelona about an exit from Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has been quoted that he is reluctant to sell Coutinho although it’s fair to wonder if a £65 million offer might test the Liverpool manager’s resolve.
And per The Liverpool ECHO, the fans are handling this story well and panic isn’t taking over. But this latest rumour makes my teeth ache on several layers.
First off, and bear with me here, if Liverpool and Barca were stocks, Liverpool’s trajectory would be moving up while Barcelona, is at best holding steady to taking a dip.
Doubt me? Look at the issues the club has with keeping a manager: since Pep decided he’d rather learn to speak German than stay there, Barcelona has had Tito Vilanova, Tata Martino, Luis Enrique and so it will carry undoubtedly carry on.
Furthermore, in regards to international football, the Spain reign has started to wane. Look at Barcelona’s roster and notice how names like Victor Valdés, Carles Puyol and Xavi are no longer there.
And I know that Barcelona is valued at £2.75 billion, so the chances that they’re ever going to fade away are slim. But who would want to be a part of this Banana Republic while they’re learning to be great again?
Here’s another thing: Coutinho signed a five-year extension back in January of this year and said, “I signed this new contract to stay here for a few more years because it’s a great honour for me.”
But what I don’t understand is why the club would cave into any demands for him to leave. I mean, if the player can just walk away whenever he wants, what was the contract he signed even about?
And what’s equally as vexing is that, whether it was Luis Suarez or will be Phillippe Coutinho, I don’t understand what supposed leverage the player has.
If Coutinho wanted to go to Barcelona and Liverpool declined, what is Coutinho going to do? Retire? Take that job performing a lounge act singing Burt Bacharach tunes twice-a-night at the Desert Sands in Las Vegas? Go to work at Apple Computers running the International Marketing department?
If Klopp decides to sell Coutinho, I hope he gouges Barcelona for a combination of the £65 million plus any talented players at Barca that Klopp would like. And if Barcelona doesn’t like the deal, then tell ’em to pound sand.
And if Coutinho isn’t happy, I received an email a few moments ago informing me that IBM is hiring.