Coutinho rejects Tottenham move
Philippe Coutinho will not be joining Tottenham Hotspur this transfer window after rejecting a temporary switch to north London.
The Brazilian has been linked with a move away from Barcelona for much of the off-season after an underwhelming 18 months at the club.
Barca’s capture of Antoine Griezmann and protracted deal to bring Neymar back to the club has pushed the South American down the pecking order at the Nou Camp and the club hierarchy are prepared to let him go this summer.
However, it appears that both the club and the player would prefer to pursue a permanent switch away, meaning Tottenham’s loan bid was unlikely to ever be successful.
The fee reported to be enough to seal his signature is £80million, and it appears no Premier League club is willing to spend that type of money to bring him back to England, with both Arsenal and Manchester United also linked with a move.
BREAKING: Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho has turned down a loan move to Spurs
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 7, 2019
Spurs appear to have turned their attentions to Giovani Lo Celso of Real Betis instead – a player they were courting at the beginning of the summer.,
It is understood they have submitted a bid of £55.5million to bring in the 23-year-old Argentine, although that is around £10million short to what the La Liga side value him at.
It promises to be a very interesting last 24 hours in the transfer market for Mauricio Pochettino who is still unsure which players may be leaving or joining the club.
Christian Eriksen has been linked with a switch away, with Manchester United said to be in the running for his signature, although they are convinced he is holding out for a move to Real Madrid.
It means that after a period of frugality for Tottenham – born out of their move to a state-of-the-art new stadium – they may have a new-look, expensively assembled side for their first match of the campaign against Aston Villa.
Coutinho may have scuppered that, with Pochettino seemingly unable to convince the 27-year-old to reunite with him – the two were together briefly in 2012 at Espanyol where he scored five goals in 16 games.
Nevertheless, they are still pursuing a move for Lo Celso and may use any money from selling Eriksen to fund him and potentially another move for the former Liverpool forward.
Tanguy Ndombele became their record signing earlier in the summer as Spurs sought to improve their central midfield options, and are now looking for more gold dust higher up the park.
Tottenham finished third in the league last season and were in the title race up until Christmas, but a mid-season slump saw them finish well behind Manchester City and Liverpool.