Philippe Coutinho was left out of Barcelona's matchday squad for the season opener amid reports of a completed loan to Bayern Munich.

By 90Min
August 16, 2019

Barcelona and Bayern Munich have agreed to a deal that will send Philippe Coutinho to Germany on a one-year loan move, officials from both clubs have confirmed.

The Brazilian had been heavily linked with a move away from Barcelona this summer, with Bayern thought to be seriously interested as it searches for replacements for both Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben.

The club already completed a deal to sign Inter winger Ivan Perisic on loan, and RAC1 claimed that Coutinho could soon follow him through the door after finally agreeing to a move to the Bundesliga giants.

Coutinho was subsequently left out of the matchday squad to face Athletic Bilbao on Friday evening, and journalist Alfredo Martinez added that he is expected to fly to Germany this weekend to finalize the move.

That was all subsequently confirmed by Bayern Munich officials following the club's season-opening draw vs. Hertha Berlin. CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, manager Niko Kovac and sporting director Hasan Salihamidžić all commented on the move, which is just short of official.

Coutinho's exit from Camp Nou has been widely expected following a hugely disappointing debut season in Barcelona. He struggled to establish himself in Ernesto Valverde's lineup, and the arrival of Antoine Griezmann looked to have pushed him further down the pecking order.

There was a belief that Coutinho could be used as part of a swap deal to lure Neymar away from Paris Saint-Germain, with the Ligue 1 champions thought to be incredibly keen on the former Liverpool man. However, with Coutinho joining Bayern, it would suggest that a swap deal for Neymar is unlikely.

As for Bayern, Coutinho would add some much-needed depth on the wings following the departures of both Ribery and Robben. The club pursued the likes of Chelsea's Callum Hudson-Odoi and Manchester City's Leroy Sane, but was forced to pursue other options.

A deal for Perisic was quickly concluded, and now it appears as though Coutinho will be next to arrive in Bavaria.

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