Manchester United have reportedly opened up talks with Barcelona over a shock move for Philippe Coutinho, who is also on the radar of Chelsea.
Caught Offside are claiming an unreal development in the works in the transfer market. According to their report, Philippe Coutinho could be primed for a return to the Premier League. Manchester United are reportedly in talks with Barcelona to bring the Brazilian back to England, with Chelsea also interested in the playmaker.
Philippe Coutinho took time to settle in England after his move to Liverpool from Inter Milan. Billed as an enticing prospect, he blossomed soon into a full-blown superstar with ability that left defenders lying in his wake. Barcelona were always admirers of the Brazilian and decided to sign him in January, 2018 for a three-figure sum.
But, a year into his stint at Barcelona, Coutinho has not managed to create the spark on a consistent basis, with a yield of 5 goals and 4 assists this season so far. Safe to say, he has not looked like returning the investment anytime soon, with many reporting that Barcelona are prepared to listen to offers for the Brazilian, which is where Manchester United and Chelsea come in.
Chelsea do not have many options out on the wing, with Callum Hudson-Odoi also tipped to leave the club. Christian Pulisic is set to arrive in the summer. But, the prospect of bringing in a star like Coutinho will surely appeal to Chelsea, who are looking for goals from other areas, with strikers failing to deliver.
Add to that the possibility of Eden Hazard moving to Real Madrid in the summer and their interest is not unjustified.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s arrival has rejuvenated the Manchester United camp, with several people even going to the extent of saying the prospect of the Norwegian’s stay as a permanent option looks good as well. But, in case Solskjaer is not offered a permanent role, Mauricio Pochettino is the best bet to be the next boss.
And one of the priority positions that the Argentine wants is a Dele Alli substitute in the number 10 role, with James Maddison a name that has come up. Coutinho though, could be a better option, with the Brazilian having proven himself in the Premier League and at the big stage as well.
Maddison, on the other hand, is having his breakout season, of sorts and it is yet to be seen if he is able to maintain his form in the long-run.
What is interesting is Manchester United have already opened talks with Barcelona with the prospect of bringing Coutinho in, with the report iterating a fee around the £100 million mark would be enough to convince the Catalan outfit.
There might still be the question of Coutinho being interested in a move to Manchester United after having played for Liverpool for a major portion of his career, especially with the player likely to have other options to choose from. Still, it’s worth a try from Manchester United’s perspective, especially if Pochettino does end up being the next permanent manager at Old Trafford.