In an exclusive column for Betfair, Barcelona and Brazil legend Rivaldo has urged current out-of-favour star Philippe Coutinho to take a wage cut in order to prove himself to the club’s board.
Things haven’t gone well for Coutinho since he decided to leave Liverpool for Barcelona in January 2018. As per BBC Sport, the deal to take the ace to Spain was worth up to a staggering £142m.
Coutinho’s struggles with form and injuries ultimately led to him falling out of the first-team picture in Catalonia, the attacking midfielder has subsequently been loaned out to Bayern Munich for this season.
Rivaldo touched on Chelsea’s reported interest in the star, adding that the Blues are ‘favourites’ for his signature in the next transfer window.
Rivaldo, one of the greatest attacker of his generation, believes Coutinho can prove his worth to the club’s board by taking a cut on his wages.
Here’s what Rivaldo had to say on the attacking midfielder:
“Chelsea are the favourites to sign Coutinho and I don’t believe they will be put off by his recent injury. After all, next season is still very distant and he will have enough time to a completely recover.”
“On the other hand, if the transfer doesn’t go forward and he stays at Barcelona perhaps a salary reduction, based on the player’s decision, could earn plaudits from the clubs board and maybe let him show that he is eager to remain at the club and finally prove his worth.”
“Yes, there are many clubs already reducing their players’ salaries because of coronavirus crisis, but if the player takes a step forward in that themselves it would be seen as the attitude of someone interested in remaining at the club.”
“Much could happen before next season and we can only wait for the next chapters of this story.”
The Athletic (subscription required) report that Coutinho earns a staggering £225,000-a-week with Barcelona – and that’s after tax.
Whilst it’s almost unheard of for players to agree to take pay cuts whilst their still under a lucrative contract, this gesture could go a long way with Barcelona – who have seen some of their transfer plans dashed by the financial impact of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Coutinho’s spell in Germany has been alright, he’s bagged nine goals and eight assists with the German outfit, this is decent return but the ace hasn’t started much of Bayern’s games and his contributions come for a team that are largely seen as levels above the rest of the Bundesliga.