Bayern take Coutinho on loan

Sport

Bayern take Coutinho on loan

Thom Malone
Thom Malone

9:38 AM - 19 Aug 2019



Former Liverpool player Philippe Coutinho has ended his Barcelona nightmare and signed on loan for Bayern Munich.

Coutinho struggled to fit in at Barcelona since his big-money move from Liverpool in January 2018.

The Brazilian has joined the German Champions on loan initially. Bayern have the option of signing the forward for €120 million. The Bundesliga giants will pay €8.5 million to Barca and underwrite Coutinho's wages.

Welcome

The Bayern social media team are clearly delighted announcing the signing on Twitter. They will be even happier to see him trending.

Coutinho went to the Nou Camp from Liverpool in January 2018 after prolonged speculation about his future. His record transfer appeared to affect his confidence. As did confusion about his role. He was often in a straight fight with Dembele for the third offensive spot in the team. An issue neatly summed up by Ramiro Martin, Barcelona-based author of Messi: Un Genio en la Escuela del Futbol in January.

"For Barca, I prefer Dembele to start because the French player is a winger," says  Martin. "That's Dembele's natural position on the field. Coutinho, on the other hand, is neither a winger nor an interior midfielder. That's to say: Coutinho is not Dembele, but neither is he an Iniesta or a Xavi. And that leaves him with few chances to shine at Barca."

Heavy lay the crown of being both record signing and anointed successor to Andres Iniesta. This was the case made by Barcelona's former sporting director Robert Fernandez when the Brazilian joined from Liverpool.

Despite confusion about his role, the record signing still made a fairly significant contribution tot he Barcelona cause during his time there. He was involved in 31 goals in his 76 appearances across all competitions. Coutinho was left out of Barca's opening day La Liga defeat at Athletic Bilbao but was pictured in the stands in advance of today's move.

New Start

Coutinho will be joining a side who are having an uncharacteristically slow start to the season. Bayern lost the Super Cup to Dortmund in the curtain-raiser to the campaign. This weekend, despite dominating possession against Hertha Berlin only managed a 2-2 draw at the Allianz Arena. The only win of the season from their three matches so far came against third-tier Cottbus.

 

It was all smiles when Coutinho was welcomed by the Bayern Sporting Director Hasan Salihamidžić, as was the case with Robert Fernandez in January 2018 too.



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