Barcelona's Philippe Coutinho says 'yes' to Paris Saint-Germain

Coutinho will have to move the other way if Neymar's to come back to Barça

 El brasileño será clave en la operación Neymar | sport

Toni Frieros

If Barcelona and Neymar are going to get their reunion this summer, they need certain parts of the puzzle to fall into place first -- a puzzle that a few weeks ago didn't seem to correspond with reality. 

However, things have moved on to the point that none of the parts implicated in the potential deal -- Barça, Neymar and Paris Saint-Germain -- have denied the information which has appeared. 

An operation which seemed un-doable is now considered possible because everyone involved is partial to it happening. 

ENTER Coutinho

It's still complex, though, and PSG would only be ready to sell one of their biggest stars (the other is Kylian Mbappe) if they feel it will benefit them on the pitch. 

Or, at least not damage them. And that's where another player who could be key comes into the equation: Philippe Coutinho. 

The Brazilian midfielder has always been of interest to PSG and even had an offer from them the same season he joined Barça from Liverpool. If the Neymar deal had now happened in that summer of 2017, it's possible Coutinho would have become the French club's star signing that year. 

The reality and the situation now is clear: the only possibility Barça have of bringing Neymar back (among other conditions) is by paying cash and giving players in exchange. And if he returns to Camp Nou, it will be Coutinho whose place in the team disappears. 

Pie de foto | AUTOR FOTO

It is obvious that there's not space for both of them, even if they do both play for the Brazil national team alongside each other. Coutinho playing more centrally and Neymar wider. Barça's tactics are nothing like Brazil's, however. 


The news is arriving from Brazil and Paris is that Coutinho, who helped his country reach the Copa America final on Tuesday, is happy to change clubs and join PSG next season.  

His agent has been negotiating his move to the French capital for weeks with PSG's hierarchy and directly with Leonardo, the club's returning sporting director and Coutinho's compatriot. 

Everything seems positive. The operation is economically viable for PSG who don't exactly have cash problems. What's more, they would benefit from the deal, as Coutinho earns almost half what Neymar does. 

Add in the player's desire to make the move and be a success in France, something which has not happened for him in Spain, and everything is lining up. Once the Copa America ends this weekend, things could speed up. 


For Neymar to end up at Camp Nou, Barça are going to have to add another player to the deal, too. Ivan Rakitic has been linked, especially after he visited Paris this week, but it doesn't seem like it will be him. 

Neymar's intention to travel directly to Barcelona after his stay in Brazil has been advised against by those close to him. They have asked him to wait and to allow everything to follow the normal course. 


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