Arsenal were ‘really close’ to securing a deal for Philippe Coutinho, according to reports. Tottenham Hotspur were also involved for the Brazilian.
This comes from Fabrizio Romano, who spoke to the Liverpool Echo this week. The journalist claims that Arsenal were, along with Tottenham Hotspur, offered Philippe Coutinho by his agent.
In fact, the Gunners were ‘really close’ to getting the deal over the line in August. Ronald Koeman’s appointment ended the deal, however, as he didn’t see the club signing anyone better.
“Before, Barca were considering to sell Philippe Coutinho and he was on the list to sell, so his agents were working to offer him to Tottenham, to Arsenal,” said Romano.
“Arsenal were really close and at the start of August, they were ready. But once Koeman arrived, he understood it was difficult to sign other players, for example, Memphis Depay.”
This certainly would have been an interesting deal. The Telegraph claimed back in June that Barcelona were prepared to pay half of Coutinho’s £200k-a-week wages to get him off the books.
That certainly lines up with talk that Arsenal could have gotten the player as you’d imagine they would be hesitant to take those wages on.
But maybe we’ll find out one day. It sounds as though Coutinho would have left the club in an easier buying market. If January or June prove to be just that, perhaps Arsenal and Barcelona can discuss this one again.
One to keep an eye on, certainly.