It seems that Bayern Munich will not exercise the chance to sign Philippe Coutinho once his loan spell concludes. And for that reason alone, Chelsea have once again been rumoured as a possible destination for the Brazilian international. The Blues have long admired Coutinho and missed out on him last summer thanks to the transfer ban.
Chelsea are also armed with a hefty sum of spare change of up to £150m – having sold star man Eden Hazard to Real Madrid in July. The 27-year-old is still on Barcelona’s books come the end of this season and they are willing to cut their losses on him for just £85m. A substantial loss from the £105m they forked out to get his signature after leaving Liverpool in 2018.
But, if Chelsea were to use a large sum of that money to sign Coutinho, where would he fit in Lampard’s plans?
It is reported that Chelsea have been in contact with Coutinho’s representatives over bringing the attacking midfielder back to the Premier League. He was good with Liverpool during his 5-year spell on Merseyside, but for Barcelona, he hasn’t been himself and even at Bayern Munich, he hasn’t shown enough in favour of Chelsea signing him for £85m.
There would be lots of questions marks seeing him coming to Stamford Bridge. There are many young players, very talented and very promising. The club are stocked in the centre of midfield with Mateo Kovacic, Jorginho, N’Golo Kante, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and recent Scottish sensation, Billy Gilmour. That 85m could be invested in positions that need improvement like in the left-back area and a striker who can compete with Tammy Abraham, which will relieve some pressure to score the goals.
So far he has scored nine goals and provided eight assists in 32 appearances for Bayern Munich this season before the campaign was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. Those stats alone don’t warrant Chelsea to make a move for the Brazilian. The Blues have already agreed a deal with Ajax for attacking midfielder Hakim Ziyech for £33m – more than half the price of Coutinho.
It seems that Chelsea will be linked with many players in the upcoming transfer window. Manager Frank Lampard will know what areas in his squad he needs to strengthen, whether Coutinho is a high priority is questionable but would help the squad next season if he were to arrive on loan. For Coutinho’s sake, it is still unclear that he offers anything different to what Lampard already has at his disposal.