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Coutinho celebrates with Suarez and Alba.

Barcelona fans praise Philippe Coutinho after his lovely cameo against Eibar

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Barcelona extended their lead at the top of La Liga to ten points on Saturday afternoon thanks to a hard-fought 2-0 win away from home at Eibar.

Luis Suarez got things underway in the 15th-minute with a cool finish, but it wasn't until two minutes from time that Barca wrapped up the win as Jordi Alba bagged himself a rare goal.

Despite a trip to face Chelsea looming, Gerard Pique, Samuel Umtiti, Sergio Busquets, captain Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi were all named in the starting XI.

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January signing Philippe Coutinho had to settle for a place on the bench, but the 25-year-old was introduced by Ernesto Valverde whilst the game was still in the balance.

Coutinho didn't score or assist a goal against Eibar, however that hasn't stopped Barca supporters from praising the Brazilian's assured and classy 27-minute cameo.

Coutinho impresses at Eibar

When Coutinho arrived from Liverpool last month in deal that could be worth £142 million, it was thought he'd be a regular starter in La Liga, given he can't play in the Champions League.

FBL-ESP-CUP-VALENCIA-BARCELONA

That hasn't been the case thus far, but he'll be pushing for a starting place now after a lovely display at Eibar, having replaced Iniesta in the 63rd-minute.

Coutinho showed a good defensive work-rate and was also influential going forward, producing some lovely through balls, including one from which Messi should have found the back of the net.

The Brazilian playmaker always looked calm in possession, and his best moment came in the build-up to Alba's goal as he produced a perfect long-range pass to Aleix Vidal.

FBL-ESP-LIGA-EIBAR-BARCELONA

Coutinho's individual highlights

As you can see in a video of Coutinho's highlights below (2:22), Messi ran onto Vidal's cutback, and the goalkeeper's save ran nicely for Alba to slot into the bottom corner.

Barca fans praise Coutinho

Plenty of Barcelona fans took to Twitter on Saturday to praise Coutinho's performance as a substitute, with one person even claiming he did more in the match than the great Iniesta.

Check out the best reaction below:

As mentioned, Coutinho is cup-tied for Tuesday's tie at Chelsea, but the midfielder will be eager to continue his promising career as a Barca player when they host Girona next weekend.

What did YOU make of Coutinho's cameo at Eibar? Does he deserve to be a regular in Barca's starting XI? Have YOUR say in the comments box below!

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Topics:
Philippe Coutinho
La Liga
Luis Suarez
Jordi Alba
Barcelona
Lionel Messi
Football

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