Liverpool FC transfer news: Barcelona ‘ready to buy Coutinho in January’, says Catalan club boss
Barcelona will relaunch their bid to sign Liverpool star Philippe Coutinho when the transfer window reopens in January.
The Catalan club had THREE bids rejected by the Reds in the summer, with the third worth up to €130m, after the Brazilian handed in transfer request.
But the Premier League side refused to sell their key playmaker, with manager Jurgen Klopp and owners Fenway Sports Group insisted they would not be tempted by any price.
LISTEN: I’d pick him ahead of Coutinho for any team’, says Liverpool favourite
However, chief executive Oscar Grau has revealed the Spanish giants are now ‘ready to buy Coutinho’ after missing out on a number of targets in the summer.
Barca sold Brazilian forward Nemar to Paris Saint-Germain for a world-record £200million, but failed to really replace him before the window shut.
They signed French starlet Ousmane Dembele from Borussia Dortmund for around £97m, but he only made four appearances for the club before being sidelined with injury.
The Barca chief said: “We are ready to buy Coutinho in the winter market, or any player the technical staff request.
“But it is important to adjust ourselves, so if there are to be arrivals, there must be exits as well.
“We must forget about the price paid for Neymar last summer. After taxes we received about €188m in income and a direct financial impact on the club’s treasury of €144m.”
Despite Barcelona’s intentions, however, it is claimed Liverpool will again refuse to sell Coutinho in January.
According to the Independent, the Reds maintain the stance they showed over the summer and will refuse to do business with the Spanish side.
It is suggested the club are not entertaining the idea of any of their first-team stars leaving midway through the season.
Meanwhile, contrasting reports in Spain claim Coutinho WILL be allowed to leave for Barcelona in January.
According to Mundo Deportivo, the Brazilian struck a deal with the Merseyside club in the summer after his dream move to Spain broke down.
On Wednesday morning, the Catalan newspaper led with the headline ‘Pacto Coutinho’, with their story claiming the playmaker made a verbal agreement with Liverpool to stay, providing he could move on in January.
Coutinho recently signed a new five-year contract with Liverpool, which doesn’t include a release clause, only in January.
Despite his frustration at seeing his transfer request turned down, the 25-year-old has knuckled down since the transfer window closed and immediately hit form for Jurgen Klopp on his return – scoring three goals.