Despite having been keeping tabs on Philippe Coutinho, Barcelona are confident that Bayern Munich will look to exercise their option to turn his loan move into a permanent stay, according to a report by Marca.
It has been claimed the Blaugrana have been watching the Brazil international’s performances closely and have witnessed him in action on two separate occasions for the Bavarian outfit.
Indeed, Bayern are believed to have an option to sign the former Liverpool man for a transfer fee of €120m (£104.7m) and it would seem the Catalans expect them to snap him up at the end of the current campaign.
As Marca stated, Coutinho has found life rather difficult at Barcelona since making the switch from the Premier League and appeared to really settle into life at the Nou Camp.
Indeed, there could have been an argument that the Brazilian was played out of position when he was in Ernesto Valverde’s side as he made 59 of his 76 appearances for the Catalan giants on the left wing (TransferMarkt) – he still managed to score a total of 21 goals in his spell in Catalonia, though.
Whilst at Liverpool, he appeared to have success in the position as he managed to score 36 goals in 103 of his 201 total matches for the club, however he proved that he was just as effective in the attacking midfield role – scoring 15 goals in the 85 times he featured there (TransferMarkt) – a spot which is believed to be his main position.
Bayern appear to favour him in that spot, as they have only played in him that role in the eight matches he has featured in so far as he has managed to provide his team-mates with two goals and two assists as well.
Indeed, the 27-year-old looks to be thriving in the role as well, as he has managed to achieve averages of five and two shots per game, three and 1.7 key passes, three and 1.8 completed dribbles every 90 minutes in Champions League and Bundesliga action respectively (per WhoScored).
As Marca reported, Coutinho’s future at Barcelona appears to be rather complicated and it would be difficult to see him be reintroduced to the side with the likes of Ousmane Dembele and the emergence of 16-year-old talent Ansu Fati at the forefront of Valverde’s plans.
Of course, if the Brazilian were to continue his rich vein of form with the Bavarians, it would not be a surprise to see Bayern exercise their option to turn his deal into a permanent one and, perhaps, vindicating the Blaugrana’s confident stance regarding the 27-year-old’s future.
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