Newcastle United have been sent a clear message by Philippe Coutinho’s entourage ahead of the transfer window.
The lowdown: Record breaker
Coutinho still holds the record for the biggest transfer involving a Premier League club, having left Liverpool to join Barcelona in January 2018 for a fee of £121.5million.
He’s started five La Liga matches so far this season, making a further six substitute appearances. The 29-year-old has scored two goals from 22 shots and also recorded 16 shot-creating actions (via FBRef).
New Barca manager Xavi adores the playmaker, saying Coutinho is a player he ‘likes personally’ and stressing that he possesses an ‘innate talent’ (via ESPN).
The latest: Fresh update emerges
Mundo Deportivo (via Sport Witness) have again named Newcastle in connection with Coutinho, perhaps unsurprising given his uninspiring time since leaving England and the Magpies’ new-found riches.
However, the position of the Brazilian’s camp ‘to this day’ is that ‘he will not move from Barca in January’.
The verdict: Assist machine, but too risky
Coutinho has racked up a series of honours in his career. He’s won the Champions League and Copa America, whilst at an individual level, he’s been named in the PFA Team of the Year and even led the way for assists at a World Cup.
But according to Xavi, he’s now facing ‘psychological’ obstacles, preventing him from demonstrating that ‘innate talent’.
When you also consider his eye-watering salary, perhaps it would ultimately be for the best if Newcastle missed out on signing him, as signing a hugely costly player who is down on his luck and confidence would be an incredibly risky first marquee signing of the new era.
In other news, Newcastle have offered a record deal to this big-six ace.
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