A few days back, Spanish outlet AS [via Sports Mole] told us that Barcelona would give their marquee new signing Antoine Griezmann Coutinho’s no.7 shirt – in what would have been an incredibly disrespectful move to our former playmaker.
However, it’s now been officially announced that the Frenchman will wear the no.17, meaning Phil will keep his shirt number – if not necessarily his spot in the side!
The signing of Griezmann has been in Barca’s planning for some time, and we cannot see a scenario where he won’t walk automatically into their front-three, alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
As a result, Coutinho will have to accept a role on the bench if he stays at Barcelona, with manager Ernesto Valverde not trusting him enough defensively or tactically to play as one of the central three midfielders.
There’s been an odd rumour that Coutinho will return to Liverpool on loan, as per the Mirror, but this sounds pretty nonsensical to us.
Instead, we reckon the former Anfield hero will endure another tough season at Camp Nou, before possibly making a change next summer.