Barcelona directors have reacted to Ernesto Valverde's management of Philippe Coutinho

FC Barcelona v Villarreal CF - La Liga

It seems scarcely believable that Philippe Coutinho is already having to fight for his Barcelona career, just 12 months on from joining the club.

Coutinho was one of the Premier League's finest at Liverpool, who tried so hard to keep him but ended up accepting a bid of £142m, and he seemed like the perfect fit for Barca.

Quick, creative, skilful and lethal from outside the box, the Brazil international appeared to possess all the attributes to be a success in Catalonia.

But he's been anything but a success.

It's now been exactly one year since Coutinho made the move to Spain and due to a number of poor performances and time spent on the bench, he's being labelled as a flop.

Coutinho has gone from being the main man at Liverpool to just another player at Barcelona, which was always bound to happen with the likes of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez in the team.

Jurgen Klopp predicted that the 26-year-old would play a background role at Barca and, unfortunately for Coutinho, it's come true.

"Stay here and they will end up building a statue in your honour," said Klopp of Coutinho last year, per the Independent.

"Go somewhere else, to Barcelona, to Bayern Munich, to Real Madrid, and you will be just another player. Here you can be something more."

FC Internazionale v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Group B

A small part of Coutinho must be wishing he had stayed at Liverpool - although it has to be said he isn't completely to blame for his demise.

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has more often than not played Coutinho on the wing when his preferred position is as a No.10.

Playing out wide instead of centrally has inevitably affected the Brazilian's performances, which has resulted in Valverde dropping him to the bench for a number of big games.

Coutinho's role as a bench warmer has become a concern and according to Sport, per Spanish radio station Cope, Barcelona's directors are confused by Valverde's management of the situation.


"Regardless of his poor performances, keeping a player that cost €160 million on the bench is always going be controversial," the report states.

"Even some directors at the club are scratching their heads about how Valverde is managing Coutinho."

Well there you have it, even Barcelona's directors seem to be on Coutinho's side and think Valverde needs to give him more of a chance to prove his worth.

Hopefully their concerns have been voiced to the Barcelona manager.

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