Amid speculation over his future, Guillem Balague has insisted that Barcelona have no intention of selling Philippe Coutinho.
The 26-year-old hasn’t quite made the impact expected of him since his move from Liverpool, as he’s managed just six goals and five assists in 27 appearances so far this season having now been with the Catalan giants for a year.
As noted by The Mirror, rumours have linked the Brazilian international with a shock move to either Manchester United or Chelsea, signalling a return to England after his previous stint on Merseyside.
However, as seen in the video below from BBC 5 Live Sport, Balague was a guest pundit and has insisted that Barcelona ‘have no intention whatsoever to get rid of him’, despite his struggles to hit top form.
The Spanish football expert also emphasises the fact that a January exit seems highly unlikely in particular given the injuries and lack of depth in the squad currently, despite the arrival of Kevin-Prince Boateng on a loan deal on Tuesday.
In turn, that would suggest that neither United nor Chelsea will have much luck in trying to prise the Brazilian playmaker away from the Nou Camp, but if his struggles continue and the question marks remain, perhaps a summer swoop could prove to be more successful.
Nevertheless, having initially impressed on his arrival at Barca, it may be a case of coach Ernesto Valverde finding the key to unlocking his best form which in turn will surely silence the doubts over his future for good.
‘Barcelona have no intention of getting rid of Coutinho’@GuillemBalague says Barça are confident their Brazilian player will eventually ‘click’
— BBC 5 Live Sport (@5liveSport) January 22, 2019