Philippe Coutinho to Arsenal? An Unlikely but ideal acquisition
By Daniel Finton (Deputy Editor)
With the mayhem and uncertainty around the potential upcoming transfer window casting doubt in everyone’s mind, there is even more uncertainty over our board’s willingness to bring in a marquee signing than there ever was. Notwithstanding, defensive reinforcements as well as attacking ones are still needed- Coronavirus or not.
While big name central defenders have been linked with a switch to Arsenal, such as that of Dayot Upamecano, few attacking players have been linked. However, as of recently, one superstar name has been linked with a move to the gunners: Philippe Coutinho.
The Brazilian is currently under contract at Barcelona but is on loan at Bayern Munich. After a terrific, yet trophyless, tenure with Liverpool, the 27-year-old earned his big money dream move to Barcelona. Unfortunately for the 61 time capped former Liverpool midfielder, his time with La Blaugrana has not worked out very well.
Seeing as the Brazilian’s loan in Munich has not gone entirely to plan, the Catalans are reportedly keen to move the misfiring attacker on. Whether or not Coutinho is open to a switch is still to be determined. In my opinion, if he is open to a move and Barcelona are willing to sell for the right price, we should seriously consider signing him. He is quality.
In terms of status, goal scoring output and set piece efficiency, he would be an absolute coup. Furthermore, the fact that he has a great deal of Premier league experience under his belt is also enticing. There has been a massive void of goals left since players like Aaron Ramsey and even Alex Iwobi and Henrikh Mkhitaryan have left the club. Those aforementioned may have not seemed to be essential, although they provided us with a decent amount of finishes last season. If Coutinho was to be brought in, he would undoubtedly score and create a great deal of goals.
This creativity and goal threat is reflected in his excellent statistics this season. Coutinho has managed a staggering 0.52 xG/90 for the German Champions, demonstrating his ability to get into goal-scoring positions. He has also managed an impressive 0.24 xA/90, highlighting his ability to create high quality chances on a consistent basis. This rate of xA would make him the fifth most creative player in the Premier League.
Unfortunately, the one thing that may scare Arsenal off of the prospect of signing such a player is what are sure to be some ridiculously astronomical wages. Coutinho is reportedly paid over £200,000 per week from Barcelona and he would surely ask more if he was to make a switch to North London, given the money that basically every Premier league side has at their disposal and for the drop down he would be making.
All in all, the rumours circulating about Coutinho are purely speculative at the present moment and in all honesty, they will probably not amount to anything. Whilst I and many others would love a player as talented as him to come in, it does not seem realistic.
A player such as Buendia from Norwich would cost far less and ask for substantially reduced wages than the Brazilian, which would make him a more sensible and moreover, plausible signing. But with that being said, football is like a shoe store and you really do get what you pay for on most occasions. Coutinho’s potency would be highly beneficial to us. Unfortunately, the likelihood of a move coming to fruition is very low.