Where Arsenal stand on Philippe Coutinho transfer amid cut fees and Mikel Arteta plans


When Philippe Coutinho left Liverpool to join Barcelona in January 2018, it was seen as his next big step.Instead, his career took a back seat. Wrong.

The Brazilian’s exit from Anfield saw him leave before Liverpool conquered Europe and then the Premier League, as he was dumped by Barca after just 18 months on loan at Bayern Munich.

His attempt to revitalize his career in Bavaria didn’t quite work, a nice hat-trick against Wolfsburg other than he struggled to win and ultimately ended up as a partial as Hansi Flick’s men won. the title.

He remains with Bayern until the end of the Champions League, when they send him back to Barcelona. He remains undesirable at Camp Nou, however, with the Catalans looking to pull him off their books once again.

Ideally, they would like to recoup a decent portion of their exorbitant spending of £ 130million and above; instead, they seem to have to settle for a loan and pay part of his salary again unless something more creative can be handled.

Arsenal chiefs reflect on move after being offered to Philippe Coutinho

Coutinho himself is keen to return to the Premier League and ideally would like to stay in the Champions League.

However, there are simply no landing spots for him, none of the top four – Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United or Chelsea – are willing to take him.

As such, with a place reserved in the Europa League, that’s where Arsenal comes in.

Barcelona’s position

For Barça, Coutinho was a bust. Poorly in shape, he was signed to replace Andres Iniesta but was quickly deemed unfit for goal in central midfielder by Ernesto Valverde. Moved to the left side of the front three, that didn’t work either.

Amid financial troubles, Barcelona want him to leave, but understand that few clubs have the funds to take him, let alone the desire.

Barcelona keen to offload Coutinho as he returns from Bayern Munich loan

Quique Setien has already claimed he wants to work with Coutinho, but there really isn’t room for the Brazilian with Lionel Messi, Antoine Griezmann, Ousmane Dembele and a number of others.

Comments and role of Kia Joorabchian.

“It’s no secret that he wants to return to the Premier League,” Coutinho’s agent Kia Joorabchian said at the end of July.

“It’s always very open. There is a lot of real interest.

“He loves playing in the Premier League, he loves playing in the Premier League and that’s one of his priorities. ”

The agent has helped Coutinho navigate his career so far and is one of the main reasons Arsenal are in contention. He’s close to technical director Edu – although, as the club are keen to point out, neither his agent nor his advisor – and the Gunners have moved from a more analytical approach to one more dependent on ‘who you know’ .

Agent Kia Joorabchian has ties to Arsenal’s hierarchy

Arsenal purchasing power and Coutinho salary

The Brazilian earns around £ 9million a year in Catalonia. To loan him out last season, Bayern paid around £ 10million in loan fees and then took his salary on board.

Money should be tight this summer in the Emirates, even allowing a qualification in the Europa League after the triumph of the FA Cup.

Given Mikel Arteta’s desire to strengthen elsewhere – especially further back in midfield with Thomas Partey and Dani Ceballos, as well as in defense – and the need to give a new deal to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Coutinho is not target # 1. Especially if it’s going to eat up a big chunk of the budget. If they can switch to Mesut Ozil, that will help them.

Exchange with Matteo Guendouzi?

An agreement that has been mentioned and that could work for all parties.

This would see Matteo Guendouzi, currently sent off after failing to meet Arteta’s demands and leaving the Spaniard unhappy with his attitude, head to Spain with £ 9million, with Coutinho coming the other way.

It works for Barca as it takes Coutinho’s salary off their pounds and gives them young talent who, even if it doesn’t, could be sold for more than £ 20million.

It works for Coutinho as it allows him to step away, allowing him to ground himself once again and focus on the present, rather than worrying about the future.

And that helps Arsenal move someone the manager wants to get rid of, while also bringing in some undeniable talent at a pretty good price.

Why would Mikel Arteta be enthusiastic?

Do you know who created more chances for Arsenal in the Premier League last season than anyone? Mesut Ozil.

The German did not play after the season’s suspension in March due to coronavirus, but still ended the campaign – after making 23 appearances – as the main luck creator of the team.

Asked about the lack of creativity in the preparation for the final against Watford, Arteta said: “These statistics are not lying. When you relate that to Arsenal, it’s not good enough. ”

If Arsenal are to fight for the top four in the next term, they just need to improve in the final third. Aubameyang will take risks, but they must do more.

Arteta plans to move up to 4-3-3 formation with role for Coutinho

How would he fit in?

Arteta initially showed a preference for the 4-2-3-1, but showed his pragmatism by winning the FA Cup playing with a 3-4-3 / 5-4-1 formation.

Having initially operated with Mesut Ozil as No.10, this is undoubtedly a role Coutinho would see as ideal.

Otherwise, it all depends on Aubameyang’s future, with the captain having been huge on the left side of the attack since Arteta arrived.

While Arteta seeks to build around the Gabonese, does he put him at the center? If so, it frees up a role coming from the left, where Coutinho has often thrived at Liverpool, whether in a 4-2-3-1, 3-4-3 or, in what many see as the long-term plan of Arteta. , a 4-3-3.

However, before that, there is still a long way to go.

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