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Barca not giving up on Coutinho deal yet

Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho is currently the best midfielder in Europe, according to Xavi.PHOTO/Sky Sports

MADRID, Spain, Aug 29 – Barcelona technical secretary Robert Fernandez has indicated the club are still hoping to sign Philippe Coutinho, despite Liverpool’s refusal to sell.

The Brazil international has been the subject of three failed bids from the Catalans during the current transfer window as they search for Neymar’s replacement.

The Merseysiders issued a statement earlier this month declaring that no offers would be considered for Coutinho, who then handed in a transfer request at Anfield.

Barca’s move for Ousmane Dembele last week appeared to bring an end to their pursuit of the Reds star, but Fernandez claims that negotiations are ongoing.

“We are negotiating with some players about the possibility of incorporating them into the team and we hope to reach an agreement to introduce a new player,” he said when asked about the Coutinho situation.

“We have been working for a long time on possibilities, maybe a player comes or maybe there are two, we have to wait because we are negotiating and we can find ourselves with a favourable framework to bring one more, or maybe two.

“Everyone knows what situation the market is in and what has happened, the teams know what our situation is but the fact that we have moved quickly helps us to reach a favourable situation.

“But without a [release] clause we are forced to into long and tense negotiations and there are times we could not go further. Uneasiness can exist but we know very well what we want and we will wait until the last moment. My intention is for another player to arrive, two if possible.”

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