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Barcelona plan to sell Philippe Coutinho this summer

Barcelona are planning to sell Philippe Coutinho, just a year after making a €140 million move from Liverpool.

The transfer is to fund a deal for the player he came in to replace at the Catalan club; Neymar.

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Coutinho signed for Barca in January last year and was cup-tied in the Champions League, but he impressed in the second half of the campaign at Camp Nou, scoring 10 goals in 22 appearances as Barca won LaLiga and the Copa del Rey.

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However, he has found life more difficult in his second season and has started only one of Barca’s last five fixtures: the 1-1 draw at home to Tottenham in December when coach Ernesto Valverde picked a weakened XI with first place in the group already secured.

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The 26-year-old, who was signed as an option for the left-forward position vacated by Neymar and also with a view to stepping into Iniesta’s shoes, has not made either position his own and could now make way as Barca plan a sensational summer swoop for his international team-mate.

Neymar has been back to Barcelona on a number of occasions since his €222m move to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer of 2017 and has admitted he misses his friends Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.

“I was at their training session,” the Brazilian said last year. “I spoke with them all. I had a good time. I miss them a lot.”

Barca’s South American scout Andre Cury, who has close links with Neymar and his father and helped mastermind the forward’s transfer from Santos in 2013, set up a meeting with the player’s entourage before Christmas and the former favourite is open to a return to Camp Nou.

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