Barcelona midfielder ‘likes’ thought of joining Arsenal

Jason Soutar
Barcelona playmaker Philippe Coutinho celebrates a goal

Barcelona attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho ‘likes’ the idea of joining Arsenal, according to reports.

The former Liverpool playmaker has been heavily linked with a return to the Premier League in recent months.

Everton, Newcastle and the Gunners are the English clubs reportedly in the mix for Coutinho, who has struggled at Barcelona since his £142million transfer in 2018.

Arteta need not be tempted by Coutinho at Arsenal

He enjoyed a decent loan spell at Bayern Munich in the 2019/20 campaign, helping the Bundesliga side win the Champions League.

Barca are eager to get Coutinho off their wage bill amid their poor financial situation and could offer the Brazilian for a cut-price in January,

According to Sport (via Sport Witness): ‘The Catalan club have a ‘lot of work’ in the coming days to release some of the players, so that they can reduce their wage bill, which is vital to make new signings.’

The report adds that manager Xavi ‘does not want’ Coutinho, despite reports elsewhere claiming the midfielder will be able to prove himself to the club’s new boss.

Furthermore, Everton and Arsenal are ‘possible destinations’ for the 29-year-old, but it is unclear if he will leave permanently or on loan.

Another report, this time via Mundo Deportivo, claims Coutinho has ‘assumed his future is far away’ from the Camp Nou and a move to Arsenal ‘could be of his liking’.

Gunners striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been linked with a move the other way after the Gabon attacker was stripped of the captaincy by Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta.

The 32-year-old – who will shortly leave to compete in the Africa Cup of Nations – is currently training away from the first team and looks set to leave the club.

Meanwhile, Edinson Cavani is “unhappy” at Manchester United amid rumours linking him with a move to Barcelona and Corinthians, according to reports.

Cavani has not featured consistently for the Red Devils this season due to injury problems.

And Andre Cury – a reputable agent who was involved in Neymar’s move to Barca – claims Cavani is “unhappy” at Old Trafford, meaning a transfer next month is more likely to materialise.

“He is unhappy at United,” Cury revealed to Torcedores (via the Mirror). “He’s a guy I already know a little about his history because we almost brought him to Palmeiras the other time.”