Barcelona could ask La Liga to register Philippe Coutinho once he returns from his Bayern loan on 30 June so he can feature in the remainder of the season.
Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed the club will not be activating the option to buy in the Brazilian’s loan contract, despite the diminutive playmaker enjoying a relatively productive campaign in Bavaria which has seen him notch eight goals and six assists in 22 Bundesliga games.
However, Coutinho may have played his last game in Die Roten colours after undergoing ankle surgery at the end of April.
Nevertheless, speaking to Spanish radio station Onda Cero, journalist Alfredo Martínez has revealed that Barcelona could register the Brazilian for the remainder of the La Liga campaign, which is set to get underway on 8 June after prime minister Pedro Sánchez gave the green light for the top flight’s resumption.
And with the Blaugrana a mere two points ahead of Real Madrid at the top of the table, the potential return of Coutinho will certainly be a boost for Quique Setién – who will also welcome back Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembélé from their respective injuries when La Liga returns.
Although he’s struggled for consistency ever since he arrived in Catalonia for a huge £145m fee back in 2017, the versatile Coutinho will nonetheless provide Setién with a more natural creator in the final third compared to the Catalans’ current crop of midfielders.
The onus on the likes of Frenkie de Jong and Arthur Melo to contribute from a goals and assists perspective has increased significantly to fill the void left by Suarez and Dembélé.
Martínez, meanwhile, also described the possibility of Coutinho being apart of the Blaugrana’s Champions League knockout run, if UEFA allows it. The Brazilian, of course, has already made seven appearances for Bayern in the competition this term.
However, if Setién doesn’t view the former Liverpool star as part of his future plans, then the Catalans could also look to offload him possibly even before he makes his 30 June return.
The club are racing against the clock to bring in around €70m in player sales before the start of July to balance the club’s accounts.