Manchester United have apparently contacted the agent of former Liverpool winger, Philippe Coutinho, according to reports. It is not the first time that the Old Trafford club has been linked to the Brazilian, although nothing seems to have come of the previous reports, which personally is a good thing.
Spanish news outlet, Mundo Deportivo has reported that Chelsea would seem to be the player’s first choice, if he was to depart Barcelona this summer, currently with him on loan with Bundesliga leaders, Bayern Munich. It is also suggested that Newcastle United, who are supposedly being taken over by the Saudi Arabian’s are ‘unofficially’ interested.
The 27-year-old is not currently fit to play, after ankle surgery and his recovery might come too late for him to make an appearance before the end of the season, which will be running late this season. The Bundesliga returned last weekend with the Munich club beating Union Berlin 2-0 at the An der Alten Försterei stadion.
Bayern have the opportunity to make the Brazilian’s loan spell at the club permanent, however, they seem unwilling to meet the £100 million price tag set by the Catalan club, which would be a fee that many top clubs decide will be too high for a player who has not really been in great form since leaving Liverpool a few years back.
This season, before the coronavirus pandemic suspended world football, Coutinho made a total of 32 appearances, playing in the Bundesliga, the DFB-Pokal and the UEFA Champions League, scoring nine goals and eight assists. For £100 million, a similar fee that Borussia Dortmund would demand for Jadon Sancho, United could get so much more.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may or may not be interested in the player and this could be, I am hoping, just a rumour to get clicks to news websites. I do not think Coutinho would be a good fit for United. At Liverpool, before seemingly forcing his exit from the club, he seemed to be a tremendous player, scoring 54 goals and 45 assists in 201 appearances.
United will be seeking new additions to the squad this summer, but the financial repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic may see many big moves not happen, which is something that the clubs executive vice-chairman, Ed Woodward has warned in recent weeks, with the true figure of the problem being announced on Thursday.
United have been linked with Jadon Sancho or Borussia Dortmund, Jack Grealish of Aston Villa, Mousse Dembele of Lyon, Wassim Ben Yedder of AS Monaco and even the likes of Aaron Ramsey and Adrien Rabiot of Juventus, who only arrived at the Italian club, as free agents, last summer. Solskjaer clearly has his eye on incoming transfers.
However, in this instance, I don’t see anything solid on the links to Coutinho but felt the need to write about it, as there will. no doubt, be many more rumours circulating before the Premier League resumes and the transfer window opens, whenever that may be. I don’t think we will see Coutinho at the Theatre of Dreams in the famous United shirt though.