Philippe Coutinho says he will not sign for Manchester United this summer as he seeks to end his Barcelona woe, as reported by Sky Sports (via The Mirror).
The Brazilian is said to want to move elsewhere out of respect for the Reds, although we suspect there might be another factor at play.
Coutinho and his agent will want to build some bridges with Reds fans, who understandably were not too impressed with the manner of his exit 18 months ago, and repair the 27-year-old’s reputation with the wider football community.
It stands to reason that the real reason that Coutinho will not go to Old Trafford is not because of respect, but because United are out of the Champions League, and he doesn’t fancy playing under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and in an underwhelming, underperforming team.
Saying it’s out of respect for his former club is a much nicer way of ruling out a switch.
Coutinho is much more likely to end up at PSG if he does leave the Camp Nou this summer – but, as cynically as it might be, we don’t necessarily think it will be purely because of the reason he’s claiming.