Coutinho should fight for Barcelona future’

Coutinho should fight for Barcelona future’

Philippe Coutinho “should fight to stay” at Barcelona, says Rivaldo, with the Brazilian needing to view a return to Camp Nou at the end of a Bayern Munich loan spell as a fresh start.

It remains to be seen whether those in Catalunya will be prepared to wipe the slate clean.

Barca sanctioned a switch to Germany for the former Liverpool playmaker after seeing him struggle to live up to expectations in La Liga.

With the 27-year-old seemingly surplus to requirements, and with an extended stay at the Allianz Arena considered unlikely, transfer talk has been sparked.

Rivaldo concedes that Coutinho may be moved on, amid links to the likes of Chelsea, but the Blaugrana legend is hoping to see a fellow countryman rediscover his spark in Spain.

The World Cup winner told Betfair: “It looks like Bayern Munich won't pay Philippe Coutinho's option clause at the end of the season and the player is likely to return to Barcelona.

“I always thought Coutinho would adapt better to Spanish football than German, as there are some language and lifestyle issues that could be a little different for a Brazilian in Germany.

“Unfortunately, it hasn't gone well for the player in either league and he will be returning to Barcelona. It's up to the club and manager to decide whether he is going to have another chance next season or not.

“If the chance comes, Coutinho really needs to step up and show the great player he is, just like he did in England with Liverpool and has done with the Brazilian national team for which he is still an important player.

“I believe in his qualities and think much will depend on his will and mental strength. He must prove that others were wrong to write him off and that he can still make the difference for any team.

“Playing for Barcelona is a unique chance for a player and perhaps Coutinho's experience in the Bundesliga has made him wake up and see that Barca could be the right place for him.

“Of course, it might not turn out to be the case and he could join a Premier League club. Barca might prefer to get back some of his investment in the player.

“I think Coutinho should fight to stay at Barca and try to convince the club of his qualities. That would be a real demonstration of his personality.”

Coutinho has taken in 76 appearances for Barca since being snapped up from Liverpool in January 2018, with 21 goals recorded through those outings.
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