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Barcelona: Coutinho dropped for the good of the team - Valverde

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde explained his decision to bench Philippe Coutinho for the Blaugrana's 2-0 win over Eibar on Saturday.
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Valverde: Coutinho dropped for the good of Barcelona

Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde said Philippe Coutinho was benched for the good of the team following the LaLiga leaders' victory at Eibar.

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Despite being ineligible for Tuesday's Champions League showdown with Chelsea following his arrival from fellow last-16 participants Liverpool, Coutinho was dropped for Barça's 2-0 win on Saturday.

Coutinho - a 160-million-euro signing last month - started the goalless draw against Getafe but made way for Andrés Iniesta as goals from Luis Suárez and Jordi Alba saw Barça equal a club record of 31 games unbeaten in LaLiga.

"I think it was best for my team"

Explaining his decision to drop Coutinho, Valverde told reporters: "I think it was best for my team to try to win.

"Last week Coutinho started, Iniesta didn't, so this week Iniesta started. It's true that on Tuesday we have another match but for me the most important thing was this match.

"On Tuesday, let's see, I know Coutinho cannot play, but we will do something."