Out-of-favour Barcelona playmaker Philippe Coutinho is reportedly open to joining Arsenal in the January transfer window as a January exit looms large.
According to a report from SPORT, Barcelona outcast Philippe Coutinho prefers a transfer to the Premier League and is leaning towards a move to Arsenal ahead of the upcoming January transfer window.
Signed from Liverpool in a massive deal around four years ago, the 29-year-old has endured a torrid time at Barcelona. Having failed to get going in his first eighteen months at Camp Nou, the Brazilian spent a year on loan at Bayern Munich, where he showed signs of rejuvenation but again found it hard to make an impact upon returning to Catalonia.
Coutinho picked up an injury last year, which sidelined him for the most of early 2021. Having returned to action this season, the Brazilian playmaker continues to be out of favour and is deemed surplus to requirements as Barcelona look to get him off their books to shed his enormous wages.
To that end, Coutinho has been offered to various clubs in England such as Tottenham, Everton, Newcastle United and Arsenal. However, as per the report, the 29-year-old would prefer a move to the Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal themselves are believed to be keen on signing the ex-Liverpool playmaker in the January transfer window and have been working on a deal to sign him up. In Martin Odegaard and Emile Smith Rowe, they have two in-form creative midfielders competing for the No. 10 slot.
But with Mikel Arteta opting to use the latter out on the flanks regularly, there could be room for someone like Coutinho to arrive and provide more depth and quality in the central attacking midfield position, as Arsenal look to seal a top-four finish and return to Champions League football for next season.
Coutinho’s past with Liverpool likely rules out a move to Everton. He is believed to have already rejected Newcastle due to their involvement in the relegation battle. A move to Tottenham could be a viable option for the 29-year-old, but the report clarifies that he would prefer signing for their north London rivals, Arsenal, should he be forced to leave Barcelona.
The Catalans, for their part, are growing increasingly confident that an arrangement can be arrived at to place Coutinho at the Emirates Stadium in January. It remains to be seen if the Brazilian ends up returning to the Premier League next month by signing for Arsenal.