Jan 7, 2018
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Coutinho Barcelona bound in record transfer

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Coutinho, 25, has been a long-term target for the Blaugrana who earmarked the diminutive Brazilian as the heir to Andres Iniesta’s role in midfield.

However, the Reds who signed the midfielder from Internazionale for £8.5m in January 2013 were reluctant to allow their star player go without having a plan to replace him.

The Brazil international signed a five-year contract last January which has allowed the Reds negotiate from a strong position with the Catalan giants.

But now according to BBC Football, the player stayed behind on Merseyside while final negotiations were concluded as his Liverpool team-mates flew to Dubai for a mid-season break.

Liverpool rejected three Barca bids in excess of £118m and a transfer request from the player during the off-season but the Spanish giants have finally secured their man in what will be the third most expensive football transfer of all time.

Transfer records:

£200m – Neymar (Barcelona to Paris St-Germain) 2017

£165.7m – *Kylian Mbappe (Monaco to PSG – *loan deal with option to buy) 2017

£142m – Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool to Barcelona) 2018

£135.5m – Ousmane Dembele £135.5m (Borussia Dortmund to Barcelona) 2017

£89m- Paul Pogba £89m (Juventus to Manchester United) 2016

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