Philippe Coutinho has endured a difficult spell at Barcelona, but now the Brazil playmaker has the chance to reignite his career at Bayern Munich.

Bayern and Barca representatives confirmed on Friday that a deal had been agreed for Coutinho to join the Bundesliga champions on a season-long loan deal and the move was officially completed on Monday.

There is also an option for Bayern to buy the former Liverpool star outright for €120million at the end of the loan.

While some Bayern fans were underwhelmed with the signing of Ivan Perisic as an alternative to Leroy Sane - whose anterior cruciate ligament injury has ended the chances of an imminent move for the Manchester City winger - Coutinho's arrival will surely soften the blow should the 27-year-old recapture his Liverpool form.

Below, we analyse how Bayern could line up in 2019-20.
 

4-2-3-1: Manuel Neuer; Joshua Kimmich, Niklas Sule, Lucas Hernandez, David Alaba; Corentin Tolisso, Thiago Alcantara; Serge Gnabry, Philippe Coutinho, Kingsley Coman; Robert Lewandowski.

Coutinho's ability to not only thread sublime throughballs behind the lines, but also unleash wicked shots from range, makes him the perfect fit to play behind Lewandowski.

Niko Kovac is blessed with two rapid wingers in the form of Gnabry and Coman, who will be able to stretch the opposition and open up space for Coutinho to exploit in the centre.

While Thiago can sit as a deep-lying playmaker, Corentin Tolisso has the energy to get up in support of the front line, which would also enable Coutinho to drop back into midfield and use his dribbling skills to drive upfield.

4-3-3: Manuel Neuer; Joshua Kimmich, Niklas Sule, Lucas Hernandez, David Alaba; Thiago Alcantara, Javi Martinez, Philippe Coutinho; Serge Gnabry, Robert Lewandowski, Ivan Perisic.

Potentially a system that would be suitable for big European nights, Bayern could deploy Coutinho in a central midfield three.

Javi Martinez would come in as the holding midfielder, with Thiago able to keep things ticking over alongside the former Athletic Bilbao man.

Coutinho would be given freedom, able to drift wide and link up with the advancing full-backs, or burst forward in possession through the centre.

Brazil coach Tite often plays Coutinho in a similar role for the national team.

 

3-4-1-2: Manuel Neuer; Benjamin Pavard, Niklas Sule, Lucas Hernandez; Joshua Kimmich, Corentin Tolisso, Thiago Alcantara, David Alaba; Philippe Coutinho; Thomas Muller, Robert Lewandowski.

Hernandez came in as Bayern's record signing from Atletico Madrid, but he is not the only defender to have joined the Bundesliga giants, with fellow World Cup winner Pavard having also arrived.

Hernandez may be likely to start more games, but Pavard's introduction could also lead to Bayern deploying a back three, with Coutinho utilised in a playmaking role behind a front two - in this case, Lewandowski and Muller.

One concern with this line-up could be a lack of pace, though Kovac would have the option to introduce Coman, Gnabry or Perisic from the bench if required, with Muller and Lewandowski likely to thrive off Coutinho's creativity.

 

4-2-3-1: Manuel Neuer; Joshua Kimmich, Niklas Sule, Lucas Hernandez, David Alaba; Corentin Tolisso; Thiago Alcantara; Serge Gnabry, Thomas Muller, Philippe Coutinho; Robert Lewandowski.

Coutinho was often forced to play wide at Barca, though that was in more of a front three or a 4-4-2.

At Liverpool, Jurgen Klopp regularly deployed Coutinho on the left flank, with the Brazilian encouraged to drift infield and link the play or get off a deadly shot.

Kovac could use his new signing in a similar way, allowing Coutinho to cut inside and switch the play to Gnabry on the opposite flank, while there would also be room for Muller to play as a second striker.

Philippe Coutinho has landed in Germany to finalise his season-long loan move to Bayern Munich.

The Brazil international is expected to undergo a medical on Sunday before agreeing a deal that includes an option for the Bundesliga champions to purchase him on a permanent basis.

Barca spokesman Guillermo Amor announced Coutinho's impending departure on Friday, ahead of the club's season-opening loss to Athletic Bilbao.

Signed from Liverpool in January 2018, the 27-year-old struggled to find his best form at Camp Nou and was restricted to 22 LaLiga starts last season.

Coutinho had been linked to Paris Saint-Germain as a potential makeweight in a swap deal that would have sent compatriot Neymar back to Barca, while Premier League clubs Arsenal and Tottenham are said to have investigated loan moves before their transfer window closed.

Bayern Munich-bound Philippe Coutinho will be head and shoulders above every other player in the Bundesliga, according to former team-mate Marko Grujic.

Coutinho, 27, is on the cusp of joining Niko Kovac's side on a season-long loan from Barcelona.

The agreement will include an option for Bayern to sign the Brazilian on a permanent basis, their sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic confirmed.

Hertha Berlin midfielder Grujic played alongside Coutinho at Liverpool and thinks German football fans are in for a treat.

"It's a big deal for the whole Bundesliga that we now have the opportunity to see Coutinho," Grujic told Sport Bild.

"He is a special, exciting player, capable of crazy things. He has incredible tricks and skills. I enjoyed every training session with him.

"He will be the best footballer in Germany by far."

Coutinho is expected to undergo a medical in Bavaria on either Sunday or Monday.

His new club started their title defence with a 2-2 draw at home to Hertha on Friday, Grujic scoring the second for the visitors before Robert Lewandowski completed his brace to force a share of the spoils.

Luis Suarez is out for an indefinite period after injuring his right calf in Barcelona's LaLiga loss to Athletic Bilbao on Friday, the club have confirmed.

The 32-year-old striker had to be replaced before half-time at San Mames after receiving treatment following a shot that hit the post.

Lionel Messi missed the match with a calf issue of his own suffered shortly before Barca travelled to the United States for two friendly matches against Napoli last week.

Their absences were felt as Ernesto Valverde's men succumbed to a stunning late winner from Athletic veteran Aritz Aduriz.

"Tests carried out on Saturday morning have confirmed Luis Suarez has an injured right calf," Barca said in a statement.

"His recovery will dictate his return to action."

Suarez's early withdrawal was the first time he has been substituted in the first half of a LaLiga game since he joined Barca from Liverpool in 2014.

The champions suddenly look light on forwards, with Philippe Coutinho set to join Bayern Munich on loan with a view to a permanent deal.

Antoine Griezmann debuted against Athletic, but Suarez's injury and Coutinho's departure could see Barca ramp up their interest in former player Neymar, who looks increasingly likely to leave Paris Saint-Germain.

Robert Lewandowski believes Philippe Coutinho will make a seamless transition to Bayern Munich after the Bundesliga champions agreed to a deal to sign the Barcelona playmaker.

Coutinho is set to join Bayern on loan for the 2019-20 season – the deal including an option to buy the Brazil international – after the German giants and Barca confirmed on Friday that an agreement is in place.

Bayern have been desperate to reinforce their squad following the departures of Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben, and the conclusion of James Rodriguez's loan deal from Real Madrid.

Ivan Perisic arrived after a serious knee injury scuppered Bayern's attempts to sign Manchester City star Leroy Sane, and Coutinho is poised to follow in Munich.

"I don't think he'll need that much time to adapt to our system and ideas," Lewandowski told reporters of Coutinho after scoring twice in Bayern's 2-2 draw at home to Hertha Berlin in the club's Bundesliga opener.

"I think he's the sort of player that can settle in without many problems."

Coutinho has struggled to cement his place at Camp Nou since joining Barca in a reported €160million transfer from Liverpool in January 2018.

The 27-year-old scored five league goals as Barca retained their LaLiga crown in 2018-19, while he managed 11 in all competitions.

It was not all good news following Friday's agreement as Bayern midfielder Renato Sanches vented his frustration with his lack of playing time.

Sanches – who has struggled since joining from Benfica in 2016 – made a brief appearance against Hertha, the Portuguese an 85th-minute replacement for Thomas Muller.

Upset with the situation following two unsuccessful attempts to leave, the 21-year-old Sanches said: "Of course I'm disappointed, it's the second time the club has not let me go, five minutes is not enough for me."

Asked about Sanches' comments, Bayern head coach Niko Kovac added: "I cannot say anything about that, I did not speak to him."

Philippe Coutinho wanted to leave Barcelona at the end of last season as he prepares to join Bayern Munich on loan, according to Ernesto Valverde.

Barca and Bayern confirmed on Friday that an agreement is in place for Coutinho to move to the Bundesliga champions for the 2019-20 campaign – the deal including an option to buy the playmaker.

Coutinho had been linked to Paris Saint-Germain as a makeweight in a possible deal for former Barca star Neymar, however, the Brazilian is now set for Munich after watching Friday's shock 1-0 loss at Athletic Bilbao from the stands.

Asked about Coutinho following Barca's disappointing LaLiga opener, head coach Valverde told Movistar: "It is a situation that last season when the league ended the player had it in his head.

"This has come up, he has accepted and hopefully he is lucky."

Coutinho, who will help to replace James Rodriguez after his two-year loan from Real Madrid ended, has struggled to cement his place at Camp Nou since joining Barca in a reported €160million transfer from Liverpool in January 2018 – a move that saw him become the world's second most expensive player.

The 27-year-old Brazil international scored five league goals as Barca retained their LaLiga crown in 2018-19, while he managed 11 in all competitions.

Coutinho is set to follow another loan signing – Ivan Perisic – through the door, though sections of Bayern's fanbase were not impressed by the deal to sign the Inter forward, who came in as an alternative to Leroy Sane after the Manchester City winger suffered a serious knee injury.

 

Bayern Munich are set to sign Philippe Coutinho on a season-long loan from Barcelona and the deal includes an option to buy the playmaker, Hasan Salihamidzic has confirmed.

Coutinho was not involved as LaLiga champions Barca suffered a surprise opening-day defeat to Athletic Bilbao on Friday, with the club's official spokesman Guillermo Amor announcing prior to kick-off an agreement had been reached to send the former Liverpool man to Bayern.

Bayern got off to a similarly sluggish start to their Spanish counterparts, drawing 2-2 at home to Hertha Berlin in the Bundesliga curtain raiser.

After the clash at Allianz Arena, Bayern sporting director Salihamidzic – who also revealed Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Mickael Cuisance will be joining the Bundesliga champions – announced a deal for Coutinho is in place.

"I can confirm that [Bayern chairman] Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and I have been in Barcelona this week and we have reached an agreement with Barcelona, with the player and his agent," he told ZDF.

"We have had very good discussions, I would like to thank Barcelona. Of course, there are still missing a few details, including the medical check and the signature.

"It is a transfer on loan for one year followed by a purchase option for Bayern."

Coutinho, who will help to replace James Rodriguez after his two-year loan from Real Madrid ended, has struggled to cement his place at Camp Nou since joining Barca in a reported €160million transfer in January 2018, a move that saw him become the world's second most expensive player.

The Brazil midfielder is set to follow another loan signing – Ivan Perisic – through the door, though sections of Bayern's fanbase were not impressed by the deal to sign the Inter forward, who came in as an alternative to Leroy Sane after the Manchester City winger suffered a serious knee injury.

"Nowadays it is not easy in the transfer market," Salihamidzic continued. "We tried very hard, it is clear that we want to offer our fans something spectacular. But to reinforce this team is not easy.

"With Perisic, some will see that he is a really good player. Coutinho will offer us options; he can play in the middle or can come from the left. The fans can be happy."

Bayern boss Niko Kovac, meanwhile, believes German football fans should be delighted a player of Coutinho's quality is joining the Bundesliga.

"I am of the opinion that we – and I do not only refer to Bayern Munich but also to the whole Bundesliga, whole Germany – can be happy to welcome such a top player here in this league," Kovac told a news conference after the draw with Hertha.

"He is a player that not only proved this in the clubs but also at the national team. If you look at the last Copa America, then you know what I am talking about. We are very delighted and I think he will fit well. He will show us what he is capable of – namely playing football very well."

Barcelona lost Luis Suarez to injury as a stunning late goal from Aritz Aduriz secured a 1-0 win for Athletic Bilbao in Friday's LaLiga opener.

With Lionel Messi missing with a calf problem and Philippe Coutinho left out amid talks with Bayern Munich over a loan move, the Catalans were found wanting in attack against coach Ernesto Valverde's old club.

Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie de Jong made their league debuts for the champions, but there was little for them to celebrate as the 2019-20 season got off to a lacklustre start at San Mames.

The loss of Suarez to a first-half muscle problem only compounded what proved a frustrating outing for the visitors, who twice hit the woodwork before Aduriz's 89th-minute overhead kick secured all three points.

 

Luis Suarez went off injured in the first half of Barcelona's opening LaLiga match of the season against Athletic Bilbao.

The striker appeared to hurt his calf muscle shortly before taking a shot that hit the post just after the half-hour mark at San Mames.

Uruguay international Suarez was given treatment but had to be withdrawn, being replaced by Rafinha.

It is the first time he has been substituted in the first half of a LaLiga game since he joined Barca from Liverpool in 2014. 

Lionel Messi was missing from the match due to a calf injury suffered shortly before Barca travelled to the United States for two friendly matches against Napoli last week.

Philippe Coutinho was left out of the squad, with Barca confirming he is in talks with Bayern Munich over a loan move to the Bundesliga champions.

Ernesto Valverde's return to San Mames was goalless at half-time, with Rafinha having also been denied by the woodwork after replacing Suarez.

Barcelona have agreed a deal to send Philippe Coutinho on loan to Bayern Munich, according to the club's official spokesman Guillermo Amor.

Coutinho moved to Camp Nou in a reported €160million deal from Liverpool in January 2018 but has struggled to recreate the form he showed at Anfield.

The Brazil international had been linked as a possible makeweight in Barca's attempt to bring back former forward Neymar from Paris Saint-Germain.

However, Bayern emerged as favourites to land Coutinho and Amor, speaking to Movistar+ prior to Barca's LaLiga opener at Athletic Bilbao, confirmed the move is imminent.

"It's possible to confirm we have an agreement to loan Coutinho to Bayern," he said.

The arrival of Coutinho will further help Bayern offset the departures of club legends Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery, with Ivan Perisic having joined on loan from Inter this week.

Manchester City winger Leroy Sane had been a target, but Bayern's attempt to pull off a deal was hindered by a serious knee injury sustained by the Germany international.

Barca's agreement to send Coutinho will also cast doubt on their chances of signing Neymar, with the LaLiga champions thought to be pursuing a player-plus-cash deal.

Antoine Griezmann will make his LaLiga debut for Barcelona against Athletic Bilbao on Friday, but Philippe Coutinho is not involved.

The France international, who joined from Atletico Madrid for €120million in the close season, starts in attack alongside Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele at San Mames.

There is no place in the squad for Coutinho, who continues to be linked with a move away from Barca.

The latest reports in Spain suggest the Brazil international, also said to have been offered to Paris Saint-Germain as a makeweight in a possible deal for Neymar, could be preparing to travel to Germany to finalise a loan move to Bayern Munich.

Frenkie de Jong makes his first league outing for Barca and lines up alongside Sergi Roberto and Carles Alena in midfield, while Sergio Busquets, Samuel Umtiti and Ivan Rakitic are named among the substitutes.

Lionel Messi will not feature due to a calf injury that kept the club captain out of Barca's friendly matches against Napoli in the United States last week.

Brazil coach Tite says star player Neymar would never be left out of one of his squads as long as he was fit to feature.

Neymar was not involved for Paris Saint-Germain in their opening Ligue 1 fixture of the season against Nimes as speculation continues over his future.

Barcelona have long been linked with a move for their former forward, with reports this week claiming PSG have turned down a bid from the Catalan giants, as well as their LaLiga rivals Real Madrid.

PSG paid a world record €222million to sign Neymar from Barca in 2017 but his time in Paris has been blighted by injuries while team-mate Kylian Mbappe has become a key figure for Thomas Tuchel's side.

Neymar suffered a blow at the end of last season when, after recovering from a foot problem, he sustained an ankle injury which kept him out of the Copa America – a tournament Brazil won on home soil in his absence.

But the 27-year-old, whose injury has "completely healed" according to PSG sporting director Leonardo, features in Tite's squad for September friendlies against Colombia and Copa America finalists Peru.

"What I will say is that, concerning to a player with such a level and quality as Neymar, we would never leave him out of this group," Tite told a news conference on Friday.

"We talked about three aspects that we can make public, not all the conversation but these things we can. Firstly, his moment and how he felt. He said he was happy, feeling okay and he had been working normally.

"I asked about his emotional situation because this influences the athlete's performance. He said he was calm, that he knew things were taking their way and that he was waiting for PSG to give a definition of his situation.

"The third aspect we talked about was how he felt about playing before our matches, because there's an optimal time to play as long as he's available."

Philippe Coutinho was reportedly included in Barca's offer to PSG for Neymar, and though the playmaker has struggled to cement a place at Camp Nou, Tite is confident he will soon rediscover his best form for club and country.

"He's had highs and lows," Tite added. "He started the Copa America, more precisely the first two matches, being the star of it.

"And then he drops a bit, but gets back to his level. He's a great player and hopefully he'll get back to that pattern from Liverpool.

"But it's normal, sometimes, when you change clubs. I'm sure that getting back to his former level is his goal and ours too."

Juventus, Roma, Napoli, Monaco and Paris Saint-Germain.

Where will Inter outcast Mauro Icardi end up before the transfer window shuts on September 2?

The Ligue 1 champions are reportedly interested in the former Inter captain.

 

TOP STORY – PSG WANT ICARDI IF NEYMAR LEAVES

According to journalist Tancredi Palmeri, Paris Saint-Germain are interested in signing Inter forward Icardi.

Icardi is not wanted at Inter, where he has been deemed surplus to requirements by head coach Antonio Conte.

And Icardi has reportedly been offered to PSG by Inter, who apparently want to block Paulo Dybala moving to Paris from Juventus.

Palmeri's column for Tuttomercatoweb insists Icardi's transfer to PSG depends on Neymar's departure, with Barcelona and Real Madrid eyeing the Brazilian.

 

ROUND-UP 

- The Neymar saga is ongoing as Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona try to strike a deal. Barca reportedly offered €80million plus Philippe Coutinho to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou, two years after his €222m departure. According to ESPN FC, Barca are willing to part with Coutinho and Ivan Rakitic as well as a fee.

Alexis Sanchez could be sent to Manchester United's reserves if he is not sold before the European window's closure, claims The Sun. United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is reportedly desperate to move on Sanchez, who has been linked to Roma.

- Gazzetta dello Sport says Inter and Juventus will go head-to-head to sign Fiorentina and Italy star Federico Chiesa at the end of 2019-20. Chiesa is a wanted man but new Viola owner Rocco Commisso is unwilling to sell his prized €70m asset.

Roma are preparing a bid to bring in Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi. That is according to Sky Sport Italia, regardless of whether Edin Dzeko is sold to Inter. Batshuayi spent time on loan with Valencia and Crystal Palace last season.

Monaco have approached Juventus defender Daniele Rugani, claims Goal. Roma have also been linked to Rugani, however, reports in England say Liverpool's Dejan Lovren is the Giallorossi's first choice.

- According to Marca, Valencia want AC Milan striker Andre Silva to replace outgoing forward Rodrigo Moreno. Rodrigo is poised to join LaLiga rivals Atletico Madrid and Silva is behind Krzysztof Piatek and Rafael Leao in Milan's pecking order. It comes as Milan try to wrap up a deal for Atletico forward Angel Correa.

What does the future hold for Neymar?

That remains unclear. Though it is certain that the world's most expensive player wants to leave Paris just two years on from his €222million arrival in the French capital.

A return to former club Barcelona and a blockbuster move to Real Madrid are both options as this transfer saga drags on.

 

TOP STORY – TUCHEL WANTS DEMBELE IN NEYMAR DEAL

According to le10sport, Paris Saint-Germain head coach Thomas Tuchel wants Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele included in any deal for wantaway star Neymar.

Neymar has been linked with a return to LaLiga champions Barcelona, as well as Real Madrid before the European transfer window shuts.

Having already splashed the cash on Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie de Jong, Barca are unable to meet PSG's demands in cash, so players and a sum of money has been mooted.

Philippe Coutinho is one played reportedly in the mix to move to PSG, though Tuchel wants to reunite with former Borussia Dortmund star Dembele.

 

ROUND-UP 

- Real Madrid will give up on signing Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba if they manage to sign Neymar from PSG, says The Sun. Los Blancos are desperate to beat Barca to Neymar's signature, reportedly willing to offer Isco, Marcelo or Raphael Varane plus cash for the Brazilian.

- Tottenham are ready to double Christian Eriksen's wages with a £200,000 per-week offer, according to the Daily Mail, as Juventus and Real Madrid continue to monitor the Denmark playmaker. Eriksen's current deal with Spurs expires at the end of this season.

- According to Gianluca Di Marzio, Ligue 1 side Monaco have joined the hunt to sign Inter outcast Mauro Icardi. Roma and Napoli are also interested in Icardi, however, Sportitalia claims the Argentina international only wants Juventus.

Napoli are eyeing former Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente, says Sky Sports. Llorente is a free agent after leaving Spurs. It comes as Napoli close in on PSV winger Hirving Lozano, with Corriere dello Sport reporting the Italian team have offered €60million for Icardi.

- The Corriere dello Sport also says AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma is close to leaving San Siro. PSG are the favourites to land Donnarumma thanks to sporting director Leonardo, who left Milan for PSG at the end of 2018-19.

Bayern Munich are interested in Barcelona playmaker Coutinho, reports Mundo Deportivo. A transfer depends on whether Coutinho is included in a deal to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou.

Neymar may be close to securing his return to Barcelona after all.

After leaving Barca for a world-record fee in 2017, Neymar has made it clear he wants out of Paris Saint-Germain and re-joining the LaLiga champions has emerged as an option.

While Real Madrid have been linked, Neymar could be granted a Camp Nou comeback.

 

TOP STORY – PSG EYE COUTINHO IN NEYMAR TRANSFER

Paris Saint-Germain would accept Philippe Coutinho in a deal that would send Neymar back to Barcelona, reports RMC Sport.

Neymar sat out Sunday's 3-0 Ligue 1 victory over Nimes amid links to Barca and LaLiga giants Real Madrid.

Talks between PSG and Barca have hit an impasse as the French champions look to recoup most of the €222million they invested in Neymar two years ago.

Barca have already invested heavily in the transfer market, however, talks between the two clubs have accelerated thanks to the possible inclusion of Coutinho and cash. At the other end of the spectrum, Sport says talks have stalled as PSG demand three players in addition to a fee.

 

ROUND-UP 

- Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is top of Inter's wish list before the transfer window shuts in Europe. Tuttosport claims Mauro Icardi's possible exit to either Juventus or Napoli would finance a deal for the Serbia international, who was tipped to move to Manchester United if Paul Pogba left for Real Madrid. Barcelona's Ivan Rakitic is also a target for Inter, according to reports in Spain.

- The window may have closed in England, however, The Sun says Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard wants to sign Leicester City full-back Ben Chilwell when the club's transfer ban ends.

- Inter winger Ivan Perisic is scheduled to undergo a medical at Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich, according to Corriere dello Sport. Former Borussia Dortmund and Wolfsburg star Perisic is poised to return to Germany via Bayern on a season-long loan deal with the option to buy.

- Tuttosport says Juventus full-back Luca Pellegrini is set to re-join Cagliari on loan. Pellegrini – who spent the second half of last season on loan at Cagliari – only arrived in Turin from Roma in June.

Napoli are poised to sign PSV star Hirving Lozano, according to Calciomercato. The Mexico international's agent Mino Raiola has reportedly travelled to Naples to wrap up a deal.

Page 4 of 6
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.