Barcelona in Search of Attacking Flair

Barcelona in Search of Attacking FlairBarcelona in Search of Attacking Flair

One of the more surprising tactical facets of Barcelona’s season under Ernesto Valverde has been the domineering defensive displays on offer, but that has not been for the want of trying to increase the side’s offensive capabilities.

In public, the coach often lauds how he is ‘overrun’ with options in his squad and dismisses any sense that there is a Neymar-shaped hole in his line-up. Behind the scenes, matters are viewed quite differently, Marca reported.

As Sergio Busquets put it recently, Barcelona lacks numbers and the injury to Ousmane Dembele has shown a lack of top class depth in the Catalans’ ranks.

This is a problem that Valverde and his club colleagues want to address, even if there is reduced urgency due to the comfortable nature of their lead in La Liga.

The name that continues to pop up as to who may fill this gap is Philippe Coutinho, and the Brazilian is still the number one target for Barcelona despite Liverpool’s best intentions.

His desire to move to the Camp Nou has not subsided since the summer and he offers experience in both Spanish and top level European football.

Naturally, the obstacle remains for the Reds and their refusal to even negotiate at this time of year. With five years left on his contract, a minimum bid of $140 million is thought to be necessary to put the wheels in motion for Coutinho to get out of Anfield.

The transfer department at Barcelona is more than willing to field alternative names in their quest for attacking flair, but the requirements of versatility, experience and affordability continue to be the stumbling blocks.

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