BARCELONA

Barcelona want to sell Coutinho in January

Barcelona reportedly want to sell Coutinho in January as the club looks to further cut its wage bill, a move that could facilitate the signing of Eric García or Memphis Depay.

Barcelona want to sell Coutinho in January
ALBERT GEA REUTERS

Barcelona are looking to offload Philippe Coutinho in the January transfer market, according to a report this Friday by Catalan newspaper Ara.

As reported by Ara, in light of the club’s financial difficulties, president of the Managing Commission and current interim president, Carles Tusquets, wants to further lower the club’s wage bill and has ordered sporting director Ramon Planes to have the sale of Coutinho (whose salary is understood to be around €11 million per year) lined up for the incoming president that will take office following the 24 January elections.

As is common knowledge, under Barcelona’s club statutes, the managing commission or interim president are not permitted to make executive decisions on the transfer of players. Although it must be remembered that, in 2015, Ramon Adell authorized the signings of Arda Turan and Alex Vidal.

Philippe Coutinho in actiona against Levante's Montenegrin midfielder Nikola Vukcevic at Camp Nou stadium on December 13, 2020.

Barcelona ready to offload Coutinho

Coutinho had started the season on the right foot, with coach Ronald Koeman giving the go-ahead to put a half to his transfer in the summer. The Brazilian attacking midfielder put in some convincing displays in the pre-season friendlies against Nàstic, Girona and Elche, as well as in the opening LaLiga games against Villarreal and Celta. However, since then, the former Liverpool player has fallen by the wayside somewhat and with Barça in desperate need to reduce costs, the 28-year-old’s name has been put on the table again.

The current lack of depth in the Barça squad is a factor that will have to be assessed by Koeman and the sporting director before they decide to proceed with any sale. However, the club’s financial situation is of the utmost priority and therefore any future president will surely look favourably on selling Coutinho during the January transfer window.

Barcelona eyeing García and Depay

Also on the table in January are the possible signings of Eric García, a former member of the Barcelona academy who was sold to Manchester City in September 2019, and Lyon’s Dutch forward, Memphis Depay.

The sale of Coutinho would facilitate of move for these players since LaLiga rules will only allow Barça to sign players if the club makes sales for an amount four times higher than the money spent on incoming signings.