At last, the most awaited and anticipated transfer of the winter window is now done. The Catalan side may be receiving their biggest New Year Gift as a Left Wing Forward or an attacking midfield superstar. Yes, the curtain raises and the deal is finally done!
Philippe Coutinho is going to join Barcelona. ‘Which ends well, fells well’, this is maybe the thought of what the Catalan is relaxing on.
Barcelona has agreed on the signing of Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool for a fee of £142m.
The Catalan Giants may receive the Brazil international to fly out at Camp Nou to be at their match with Levante on Sunday afternoon.
Coutinho stated his wish to play no more with the Anfield side and he wasn’t with his Liverpool team-mates as they flew to Dubai on Saturday.
Barcelona has put together a package worth a basic fee of £106m, plus a further £36m in variables of which £26m should be easily met. An additional £17m would be payable for the first 100 games Coutinho plays for Barcelona, £4.4m per 25 games. A further £4.4m would be paid for Champions League qualification in the first two seasons with a £4.4m bonus for winning the competition. Coutinho has agreed on a five-and-a-half-year deal worth £12.1m a season.
It would be the second most expensive transfer of all-time, behind his compatriot Neymar, who left Barcelona to join Paris Saint-Germain in a £198m move last summer.
And it would be the biggest-ever fee for a player who did not have a release clause in their contract. Liverpool would have a handsome profit from the deal, who signed Coutinho from Inter Milan for £8.5m in 2013.
The transfer will also break the record for a player sold by an English club.
If he signs at the start of this week, Coutinho may make his debut on Thursday in the Spanish Cup against Celta Vigo.
Though he will not be able to play for Barcelona in the Champions League as his name is being registered as an Anfield player in this season. So participation both in the Copa del Rey and La Liga will be important for him ahead of next summer’s World Cup.
The Reds’ manager Jurgen Klopp was determined last summer that Coutinho would not be allowed to leave and rejected a number of bids from Barcelona which went as high as £114m.
Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group took an unusual step of declaring a statement that the player would not be sold in that transfer window. Since then, Liverpool’s stand has been softened, and here comes the result.
His arrival allows Andres Iniesta, the Grandfather of this Barcelona team, to rest for domestic competitions. Though he must perform in the Champions League. It would also reunite him with Luis Suarez who he formed a close friendship with on Merseyside.
A summary of his journey at Anfield thus far:
From 2012-14: 8 goals from 50 appearances
In 2014-15 season: 8 goals from 52 appearances
For the 2015-16 campaign: 12 goals from 43 appearances
Back in 2016-17: 14 goals from 36 appearances
This term: 12 goals from 18 appearances
It may result in tough time for the Liverpool fans, who supported this man in goods and bads, cheered him in the silence of failure. But everyone must remember that “Team Game” is beyond the individual. This is football. Maybe this is how Barcelona cried when the transfer window torn a name from them: Neymar Junior!