Philippe Coutinho has been unveiled by Barcelona at the Nou Camp after completing his £145million move from Liverpool, wearing a club tracksuit in front of the photographers with a big smile on his face.
The Brazilian playmaker who was highly rumoured with a transfer to Barcelona since July 2017 finally made the move from Liverpool to the Catalan giants making this the second biggest transfer fee in football history after the £200million move of his fellow country man Neymar Jr. from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer of 2017.
He will be officially presented to the Barca fans this Monday afternoon, but was unofficially presented to the media after Barcelona’s 3-0 victory over Levante for the La Liga Championship.
Philippe uploaded a video on Twitter addressing the fans in English saying:
Hi Barca fans. I am here. It is a dream come true and I hope to see you tomorrow.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) January 7, 2018
The former Liverpool player made 200 appearances for the club scoring 54 goals in total. Jurgen Klopp made a statement to the Liverpool fans regarding Coutinho’s transfer:
It is with great reluctance that we as a team and club prepare to say farewell to a good friend, a wonderful person and a fantastic player in Philippe Coutinho.
It is no secret that Philippe has wanted this move to happen since July, when Barcelona first made their interest known. Philippe was insistent with me, the owners and even his team-mates this was a move he was desperate to make happen.
Despite that, we managed to keep the player here beyond the summer window, hoping that we would be able to persuade him to stay and be part of what we are looking to do.
I can tell the Liverpool supporters that we, as a club, have done everything within our means to convince Philippe that remaining part of LFC was as attractive as moving to Spain, but he is 100 per cent certain his future and that of his family belongs at Barcelona. It is his dream and I am now convinced there is nothing left at our disposal to change his mind.
In an interview made after Barcelona’s Sunday match win against Levante to striker Luis Suarez who enjoyed a fantastic spell with the new Barca man at Liverpool, he was asked for his opinion of the new signing and he welcomed Philippe with the following comments:
As a former team-mate, as a friend, I’m very happy for him. I think he’s going to contribute a lot to the team. Everyone knows the quality that he has, he’s been in the elite group of players for many years.
Despite the fact that Barcelona has a 9 point lead in the La Liga race they added another “Star” player to form a deadly combination with Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi in Barca’s attack.