Coutinho: Now I have to return to Barcelona

Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho came on as a second half substitute for Bayern Munich in Sunday night’s Champions League final, but failed to rule out a return to parent club FC Barcelona for the coming season.

Barcelona’s record signing spent this season at Bayern after struggling to make an impact in the previous 18 months at the Camp Nou, but now with his loan over, Barcelona will have to decide if he can form part of their rebuilding plans, or whether they will look to sell him to raise funds for new signings.

Speaking on Spanish TV at the end of Sunday’s final, the player admitted he had not had the chance to consider what the future might hold, reports Xinhua news agency.

“I haven’t thought about that. For the moment, I have only been thinking about the final,” he commented.

“Now I have to return (to Barcelona),” he continued, adding “what I can say is that I am looking forward to working and being successful and we will see what happens.”

Coutinho looked back on Bayern’s 1-0 win over Paris Saint-Germain, which sees the German side claim the continental treble after also winning this season’s German league and cup.

“We had a great season, we prepared very well and I think we deserve the triumph,” he said.

Elsewhere, the problems are mounting up for new Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman, with the news that new signing Miralem Pjanic has tested positive for COVID-19 and will have to spend the next fortnight in isolation, meaning he will not be available for the start of pre-season training at the end of the month.

Meanwhile, Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen will miss the first two months of the new season after undergoing a knee operation a week ago.