'Coutinho key to Neymar transfer' - Catalan press review
Reports state that the Barcelona midfielder is to play an important role in bringing in his compatriot from PSG, although not one he wanted.
It was clear for most of last season that Philippe Coutinho was not fitting in to the Barcelona set up as he was expected too. And with impatient fans growing frustrated that his Liverpool highlights reel didn't play out as regularly on the Camp Nou turf, thoughts have now turned to how best the Brazilian can be used to benefit the team for the upcoming season, as a makeweight for Neymar.
Coutinho plus cash for Neymar
The Catalan press had a clear focus on Friday, with the ever-stronger links being made with Barça and Neymar.
Sport featured the PSG star on their cover and led with the title 'Already in negotiations'. They report that the Ligue 1 and LaLiga champions are using intermediaries to work on the detail of a potential move, with PSG demanding 300 million euros, and Barça looking to use Coutinho to cover two-thirds of that amount.
Mundo Deportivo's front page has the image of Barça's current Brazilian with the headline: 'Coutinho prefers PSG'. They claim that the player has had offers from both Chelsea and Manchester United but would be happier to head to the French capital instead of returning to one of Liverpool's Premier League rivals, a switch that can aid 'Operation Neymar'.
L'Esportiu also go with Neymar on their cover, advising that the discussion has begun on a potential move.
Since the European seasons ended, the speculation around where Neymar would be playing after the summer has been intense. More and more noise suggests that a return to the Camp Nou is the right fit, despite the player burning several bridges, and it is now a case of whether an agreement between the clubs can be found.