Philippe Coutinho staying at Barcelona, confirms agent

Philippe Coutinho is set to stay at Barcelona and he is part of the plans of new boss Ronald Koeman, his agent Kia Joorabchian has confirmed.

The Brazilian international was only introduced late as a substitute in Bayern Munich’s devastating 8-2 victory over a beleaguered Blaugrana in the Champions League quarter finals last month, but he netted twice and provided an assist to rub salt into the wounds of the Catalan giants.

It has been widely speculated that the Brazilian – Barcelona’s club record signing – will leave the club this summer due to his wage bill and that he was unlikely to force his way back into the first-team squad.

“Koeman called him after the Champions League victory with Bayern, the following day, and told him he’s very much in his plans and would like him to return,” Joorabchian told TalkSport, via Diario Sport.

“He was due to return on Sept. 7 but actually he returned at the beginning of September because he didn’t want to lose his momentum and fitness, and he’s been training with Barcelona.

“All signs point to the fact Barcelona have changed quite dramatically, the way their philosophy of how they wanted to move forward from last year and the players they’ve brought in, like Coutinho, Dembele and Griezmann they’re all going to be part of the squad this year.”

There are likely to be significant changes to the club’s squad ahead of next season following a trophyless campaign which ended with the humiliating defeat to Bayern.

Ivan Rakitic has already been sold with Arturo Vidal and Luis Suarez set to be the next to confirm their departures from the Camp Nou.

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