Barcelona legend Andres Iniesta asserted that Phillipe Coutinho’s arrival at the club does not signal that his own days are numbered
Phillipe Coutinho has come to Barcelona after a long-drawn transfer saga reached its conclusion. The Catalan club paid €160 million for Coutinho’s services. The Brazilian was targeted as a priority signing by the club ever since Neymar’s departure. Now he will be looked upon to slot seamlessly in Barcelona’s midfield and lessen Iniesta’s burden. The 33-year-old is reaching the end of his playing career and Coutinho is seen as his successor by many.
However, Iniesta insisted that Coutinho has not been brought in to replace him.
— Daily Star Sport (@DailyStar_Sport) January 12, 2018
Andres Iniesta speaking after Phillipe Coutinho’s arrival at the club
Iniesta was quick to assure everyone that the Brazilian is a great addition to the squad but he will not be the one to decide his future at the club. He said, “I’m a player for this club and I’ve always said that only the best can play for this club. That makes Coutinho one of the best. He’s young and he has an innate talent, while Barcelona is a club where he can keep growing.”
Iniesta speaking to Onda Cero, added, “That said, there will never be a player that will make me retire or kick me out of here. At 33 years of age, that isn’t the issue. Coutinho has come here to improve us.”
“I’m happy that he is one of the best players in his position. He has things that we like. He’s a quick and skilful player who links up well, creates goals and scores them.”
Iniesta also touched upon the astronomical fee paid by Barcelona to secure the Brazilian’s signature. “He’ll find a very good environment to grow here. The money we paid for him is another thing. The price of the market decides what a player is worth. Beyond the madness, we must be happy that he’s ours.”
Iniesta is still among the world’s best in his position. At 33 years young, he makes the Barcelona side tick. Coutinho’s arrival will add a lot to an ageing Barcelona midfield. His drive and skills will make up for Iniesta’s absence when the Spaniard feels the need to be rested. Iniesta said that no one can make him retire and that is true, a player of his calibre will decide his own future no matter what anyone may think.