Barcelona feel they are close to a deal to sign Philippe Coutinho amid an ongoing battle against a firm Liverpool stance.
The Catalan giants have been in pursuit of the Brazilian since before the completion of Neymar’s £198million move to Paris Saint-Germain, viewing him as an ideal replacement for his fellow countryman.
Two bids of £72million and £90million have already been rejected by Liverpool and met with an adamance that the 25-year-old would not be sold for any price this summer.
Despite the apparent difficulty changing the minds of Reds officials, Barcelona appear confident that a deal is in motion and on the way towards being agreed.
The Spanish club’s president Pep Segura has stated that deals for Coutinho and Borussia Dortmund’s Ousmane Dembele are nearing completion.
“We are close to Coutinho and Dembele,” he revealed on Catalan television station TV3, per the Telegraph.
“We are discussing their deals but do not know when it will be done. Yes, we expect it.”
For this kind of update to come courtesy of a Barcelona official suggests it has every chance of being true, especially given the risks associated with going into such detail in the modern day transfer window.
Having said this, there have been few signs of Liverpool budging from their initial stance, thereby hinting at a lack of substance to Segura’s claims.
Coutinho’s transfer request has made his position clear, although the belief he won’t be one to sulk if made to stay means there is a chance the club will be prepared to keep him, regardless of his wishes.
The see-saw nature of related reports in both Spain and England has made if difficult to know just how seriously to process such bold suggestions.
As far as Reds are concerned, Liverpool’s stand has not changed and Coutinho is not for sale.