Barcelona's interest in Philippe Coutinho appears to be over after latest ultimatum



Posted Monday, August 21, 2017 by givemesport.com

Barcelona's interest in Philippe Coutinho appears to be over after latest ultimatum

Neymar's world-record £200 million move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain was always going to have side effects across the whole of Europe.

With Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez both aged 30, Barca desperately need to replace the Brazilian, and their Super Cup humiliation to rivals Real Madrid underlined exactly that.

The two players the Catalan giants have been linked with most strongly are Borussia Dortmund winger Ousmane Dembele and attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho.

On Friday, Barca saw a £113 million bid for the latter rejected by Liverpool, who have continually insisted throughout the saga that they have no intention of selling their star man.

As a result of what's happened following the latest ultimatum Barca issued the Anfield club, it appears as though their pursuit of Coutinho is over.

IS BARCA'S INTEREST IN COUTINHO OVER?

Earlier today, Sky Sports' Guillem Balague claimed that Barca gave Liverpool a deadline of 7pm on Sunday to accept their most recent offer for 25-year-old playmaker Coutinho.

"We reported on Friday that Liverpool had rejected the third offer from Barcelona," Spanish football expert Balague said, via Sky Sports.

"An email was sent back (to Liverpool) from Barcelona saying, 'Okay, you rejected that - if you don't accept it, I must tell you that there is a deadline of today, Sunday - 7pm. Otherwise we withdraw the offer'."

For obvious reasons, the city of Barcelona is going through a tough time at the moment, but their side kicked off their 2017-18 La Liga campaign at home to Real Betis at 7.15pm.

The 7pm deadline has now passed and, as expected, Liverpool seemed to have ignored this ultimatum from Barca regarding their third offer for Coutinho.

Balague explained that a failure from Liverpool to accept Barcelona's offer would, in theory, mean "that's the end of that".

"That's the end of the story of Coutinho moving to Barcelona", the Sky Sports journalist added. "You never know in football, of course, but if Barcelona are true to their word, they will withdraw the offer tonight, because Liverpool have got no intention of selling."

So, as Balague said, if Barca are true to their word, it means that they have ended their interest in Coutinho and will prioritise other transfer targets.

Nice midfielder Jean Seri is close to joining the five-time European champions, and they still want to bring in the unsettled starlet Dembele before the window shuts at the end of this month.



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