Friday, December 3

Fourth and last chance for Coutinho

The Brazilian footballer continues at Barça thanks to the trust of Ronald Koeman, who extended his hand to him last year and is now waiting for his final emergence.

“Enjoy, be happy and win titles with Barcelona” were the aims of Philippe Coutinho on January 8, 2018 when he fulfilled “the dream” of signing for Barça. Although misfortune has splashed his Barça stage, he has fulfilled them: he has played in one of the biggest clubs in the world, he has had a son and a daughter and has celebrated six trophies. And yet, the Brazilian footballer’s passage through the club seems to be an absolute failure.

You have the fourth chance to transform that feeling. The last. Thanks to Ronald Koeman, who waits for you with Franciscan patience. Who held out his hand last season, believing in its virtues and in its recovery, and it is maintained in the current one. Nobody trusts Coutinho other than Koeman, given the absence of offers for a reputed 29-year-old footballer when thirty-somethings older are stirring the market while the financially bankrupt Barça is unable to deal with the signing of a substitute of comparable quality.

Better known bad (excuse me) the coach must think, who with stoic stamina is digesting his experience at Barça. Koeman expands his status as a hero in another facet for 29 years. His hectic stage as a footballer between 1988 and 1995 is a joke compared to the vicissitudes he manages as a coach. And managing a team with everything that has happened with Messi, Fati, Coutinho, Dembélé, Braithwaite, Trincao, Agüero and Memphis, to name only the strikers, grants a wide benevolence to the judgment of their work, easily and understandably forgettable when shooting. the ball.

Status and responsibility

This is where Coutinho should intervene, formerly considered a fine Rio stylist (Rio de Janeiro, June 12, 1992), matured for a long decade in Europe with his first adolescent steps at 18 at Inter Milan, with a loan in the Espanyol, and the consecration in Liverpool (2012-18) to which he came to captain, without winning any title, with 10 behind him.

With the 10 that was occupied at Barça by Lionel Messi. With the 10 that has become vacant and that, under normal conditions, he should claim. Or they would offer it to him. And that he should accept, due to status and responsibility, facing the challenge postponed since his arrival by becoming the most expensive signing in history. It is not his fault that Josep Maria Bartomeu repeated the mistake of Joan Gaspart in 2000, who with the 10,000 million pesetas check received by Figo, went to London to sign Overmars and Petit to Arsenal.

The player has been discharged since August 8 but has not yet entered any list

Bartomeu’s was 222 million euros (180 million he could spend from what Neymar collected). He paid 105 plus 40 in variables to Borussia Dortmund for Ousmane Dembélé and adding a voluminous peak he called Liverpool for Coutinho. It failed in the summer. But in winter, and thanks to a bold negotiation highlighted by the club – it claimed that they were asked for 200 million – was signed in January for 120 million plus 40 in variables: 5 million for every 25 games (Coutinho has played 90); 10 for two Barça classifications for the Champions League and 5 for each European title. 25 million have already been paid. Total: 145.

Two operations

“Do you feel a special responsibility for being Barça’s most expensive footballer?” They asked him at the presentation. «No, it is an honor, it is a dream to be here», Coutinho assured that received the medical discharge this August 8 of the double operation of the left meniscus (January 2 and April 5), but that has not yet entered any call. Like Umtiti and Pjanic. And Ansu Fati, also with a meniscal injury.

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Coutinho arrived on the wrong foot, in a bad premonition that has been fulfilled. He arrived injured from the last game with Liverpool and his debut was delayed until January 25, in a cup derby with Espanyol. His two attacking colleagues, Messi and Luis Suárez, with whom he had to rebuild the Berlin trident with Neymar, scored.

Without Messi or Suárez, he should be the third front leg, if Koeman places him on the left wing, or as a left-handed inside at 4-3-3. I mean, 10. Will it be one day?

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