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Philippe Coutinho joins Bayern Munich: New challenges await Brazilian star

'For me, this move means a new challenge in a new country with one of the best clubs in Europe,' said Coutinho

Philippe Coutinho joins Bayern Munich

Philippe Coutinho has joined Bayern Munich on a one-year loan worth €8.5 million ($9.5 million) with an option to buy, the Spanish club confirmed on August 19. 

"The agreement provides for an option for Bayern to buy at a €120-million fee," Barcelona said.

(Photograph:AFP)

Struggles at Barca

The 27-year-old Brazilian joined Barcelona from Liverpool in January 2018 for an initial €120 million in a deal that included another €40 million in potential add-ons.

But the international midfielder's stint at Barcelona never worked out as hoped despite huge excitement around his arrival at the Camp Nou.

Initially tried in midfield where he plays for Brazil, Coutinho was pushed into the front three by Ernesto Valverde last season but the switch never paid off and fans rarely glimpsed the form he showed at Liverpool.

(Photograph:AFP)

New challenge awaits

The player, who has scored 21 goals in 75 games for Barca in all competitions despite being unsettled, said he was delighted with the move to Germany.

"For me, this move means a new challenge in a new country with one of the best clubs in Europe," Coutinho said on Bayern's website.

"I'm very much looking forward to that. Like FC Bayern, I have big ambitions and I'm convinced that I can achieve them together with my new teammates."

(Photograph:AFP)

Coutinho: The story of a massive disaster?

''Coutinho: the story of a massive disaster," headlined a Barcelona-based Sport newspaper.

Speculation about his future had shadowed Coutinho over the summer with French champions Paris Saint-Germain mentioned as a likely destination in a deal linked to a potential Neymar return to Barcelona. 

Coutinho's place in the side looked shaky following the arrival of French World Cup winner Antoine Griezmann from Atletico in July and he was left out of the squad for the first game of the new La Liga season against Athletic Bilbao. 

(Photograph:AFP)

Philippe's outstanding skills

The German club hopes he will reinforce attack following the departure of veteran duo Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery at the end of last season.

"With his creativity and outstanding skills, Philippe is a player who will immediately strengthen our attack," Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said.

(Photograph:AFP)

Position and playing style

Coutinho has played as an attacking midfielder or a winger for Barcelona and Brazil.

The Brazilian boasts of excellent vision and is one of the most creative players on the pitch.

Additionally, his trademark shots from outside the box have led to several goals over the years. 

(Photograph:AFP)

His career-so-far

Coutinho began his youth career with Vasco da Gama and played there between 1999-2008 till he made his senior team debut for Inter Milan. 

After loan spells at Espanyol and Vasco de Gama, the Brazilian moved to Liverpool in 2013, where he established himself as a world-beater. 

In January 2018, Coutinho was transferred to Barcelona in a deal worth an eye-watering €142 million.

Internationally, he made his bow for Brazil against Iran in a friendly game on the 7th of October, 2010. Since then, he has been an important part of the national side. 

(Photograph:ANI)