Anfield hero is missing with a back injury but could he be in action for La Liga side in the coming weeks?
PHILIPPE COUTINHO will have his future decided at the Champions League draw on Thursday if Barcelona and Liverpool meet, according to reports in Spain.
The Brazil playmaker has been the subject of repeated bids from the La Liga side and ha emailed in a transfer request to try to force through a move to the Nou Camp.
Executives from Anfield and Catalonia should come face-to-face in Monaco – as long as Jurgen Klopp’s men get past Hoffenheim in their second leg on Wednesday.
Sport – the Spanish paper most closely associated with Barca – say the midfielder is utterly convinced he will be lining up alongside Lionel Messi very soon.
The Catalan club are desperate to replace Neymar following his £198m world-record transfer to Paris Saint-Germain, with Coutinho their top target.
The Merseyside club instantly snubbed the offer — understood to be £82m plus £36m in add-ons.
The Brazilian midfielder does not have a release clause, which is making the transfer difficult to seal for the La Liga giants.
Coutinho has missed the start of Liverpool’s season due to a mysterious back complaint but his manager insists he is not ducking out of action.
Before facing Crystal Palace on Saturday, the German said: “Phil is not available.
“He’s not in training so far.
“I think it is still the back injury, nobody has told me anything different.
When asked if Coutinho’s absence was due to his back injury, Klopp replied: “I think so.
“I’ve not been told any different.
“That is always how it is with injured players.
“I don’t know when he will be back. There’s nothing new.
“We have already said what we have to say. No news from me.
“Nobody told me anything different since we spoke last time.
“Since he had a back problem he is not in training. I have nothing bad to say about this.”
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