Sports

Philippe Coutinho gives tantalising response to Lionel Messi reunion rumours amid links to MLS & Inter Miami

Philippe Coutinho is reluctant to be drawn on transfer gossip, but says you “never know” when it comes to a possible reunion with Lionel Messi in MLS.

  • Brazilian currently on loan in Qatar
  • Switch to the States speculated on
  • Worked with all-time great at Camp Nou

WHAT HAPPENED?

The Brazilian playmaker is among those to have seen a switch to Inter Miami speculated on. Such talk comes as no surprise given that former Barcelona stars Messi, Luis Suarez, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba are already on the books at Chase Stadium.

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WHAT COUTINHO SAID

No move for Coutinho was made ahead of the 2024 season, but that could change in the future. Coutinho has told SPORT when quizzed on the rumours linking him with a switch to join Messi in the United States: “I only think about the moment. I want to be well, prepare well, play good games, enjoy football. We never know what will happen in the future. My name always appears in the newspapers where they speak in every way, good and bad. I try not to look at them and I’m just worried about doing my job well and enjoying it.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE

Coutinho has suffered a humbling fall from grace since joining Messi and Co at Camp Nou in 2018, and is now on loan at Qatari side Al-Duhail from Aston Villa, but he added when asked if he has any regrets about his big-money Barcelona transfer: “Do I regret joining Barça? No. At no time. Things didn’t go as I imagined, as people expected, as I expected because I am the first to demand more of myself on the field, I tell myself that I have to give more etc. I tried everything, I have always been very professional and I do not regret anything. It was always my dream to play for Barca. I enjoyed it, I was able to meet many people, and win titles and it will always be in the history of my life. What would I change from my time at Barca? Nothing. I wouldn’t change anything. Going back is impossible, but as I said I don’t regret anything. I always did my best in training, as I do here and as I did last year and as I will do next year. If things fit well, perfect and if not, patience.”

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WHAT NEXT?

Rather than look to bring in Coutinho prior to the 2024 MLS campaign getting underway, Inter Miami countered the loss of Facundo Farias to a season-ending injury by acquiring the potential of 21-year-old Argentine midfielder Federico Redondo.

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