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Why Coutinho won’t be signing for Man Utd this summer

01:30 EAT 09/04/2019
Philippe Coutinho Barcelona 2018-19
The Barcelona midfielder has been unhappy with his current situation at Camp Nou, though a move to Old Trafford has been ruled out – and here's why

Philippe Coutinho joined Barcelona from Liverpool for a bumper transfer deal in 2018, but things haven't gone quite according to plan in Spain. Though initially touted as an eventual replacement for Andres Iniesta, the Brazilian has struggled to convince Ernesto Valverde that he deserves a regular starting berth.

Coutinho had made just 16 starts and 10 substitute appearances in La Liga by end of March, failing to complete a full 90 minutes since January.

While the midfielder has no intentions of leaving Barcelona and is willing to fight for his place, the Catalan board are willing to negotiate offers for his offloading. They will, however, accrue a significant loss on the initial €120 million (£103m/$136m) that they paid in 2018 as they are willing to discuss offers in the region of €80m (£68.8m/$90.8m).

Though Manchester United has been rumoured as a potential destination for the ex-Liverpool midfielder, he is dissatisfied with the idea of returning to the Premier League as his family struggled to adapt to life in England.

The Brazil international spent five years at Anfield but seemed to have struggled with the cultural and language barrier, though formed deep friendships with the likes of Roberto Firmino, Lucas Leiva and Alberto Moreno.

And so, the idea of forcing his family to re-adapt to live in the United Kingdom has been an unattractive one to Coutinho, which rules out a move to Old Trafford or anywhere else in the Premier League.

Coutinho has previously mentioned that a move to Barcelona was the dream move for him and his family, with Jurgen Klopp also having admitted: "He [Coutinho] is 100% certain his future – and that of his family – belongs at Barcelona."

"This is not about money," Coutinho said about his transfer at the time to the Daily Mail. "It's about the chance to play for Barcelona, to live in Barcelona.

"I would not have left for any other club, but Barcelona is something different. It is a dream, a place of magic for me. When I was young I would watch Ronaldinho play, I would watch him give magic. Now they have Messi doing the same."


Primer dia...🙏🏽🙌🏽🔵🔴

A post shared by Philippe Coutinho (@phil.coutinho) on Jan 9, 2018 at 12:19pm PST

He followed in the footsteps of former Liverpool player Luis Suarez in joining the Catalan side, who he was close with during their time together on Merseyside.

Therefore, with Man United having been ruled out as an option, the likeliest destination for Coutinho would be Paris Saint-Germain – though no offer has yet been made. The Ligue 1 side are known to be the only European heavyweight able to pay his wages – reportedly worth €2.3m a month – and it would realise Coutinho's wish of playing alongside Brazil team-mate Neymar.

Neither Juventus or Bayern are likely alternatives, with neither side able to meet Coutinho's wage demands.

Though he may not be keen on a move to Man United or a return to his former side Liverpool, he is set to face the Red Devils in the Champions League quarter-final – and potentially a meeting with the Merseysiders in the semi-final.