Arsenal should not take expensive gamble on Barcelona flop Philippe Coutinho, warns Nigel Winterburn… former Gunners defender urges Mikel Arteta to keep faith with young stars Emile Smith Rowe, Bukayo Saka and Joe Willock
- The 28-year-old has been linked with a return to the Premier League this summer
- Brazilian playmaker has falling out of favour during injury-hit spell at Barcelona
- He is currently out of action after suffering a serious knee injury in December
Arsenal should not to sign former Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho, according to former Gunners defender Nigel Winterburn.
The 28-year-old has been linked with a return to the Premier League this summer after falling out of favour during an injury-hit spell at Barcelona.
The cash-strapped Spanish giants have reportedly offered the Brazilian back to Liverpool as they still owe part of the £145million fee they paid for him in 2018.
Arsenal are among the clubs keeping tabs on Barcelona playmaker Philippe Coutinho
Arsenal and Everton are also keeping tabs on developments.
But Winterburn, who played for Arsenal from 1987 to 2000, has urged Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta not take an expensive gamble on Coutinho and keep faith with emerging talents such as Emile Smith Rowe, Bukayo Saka and Joe Willock.
He told Goal: ‘I wouldn’t go down that line, we’ve got a lot of young talent coming through.
‘Unless he would be on the right wages or if there was a way to fit him in then it could be an option.
Barca paid an eye-watering £145m for Coutinho though could let him leave for a pittance
‘It’s been touted around so much I don’t believe it’ll happen.
‘Coutinho was very good at Liverpool, but since then I’ve not been impressed and I’m not convinced by it.’
Coutinho, 28, has had a miserable time since leaving Anfield for Spain in a record £145m move.
He became the third most expensive player of all time, behind Kylian Mbappe and Neymar, after putting pen to paper on the deal.
The 28-year-old has not played since suffering a serious knee injury in December
Barca are said to be willing to take a vastly reduced fee for Coutinho this summer, with reports suggesting Everton could potentially land his services for as little as £35million.
Coutinho is currently out of action after suffering a horrendous knee injury in December.
The playmaker returned to his home country of Brazil at the end of March for a second operation, and gave an update on his rehabilitation programme earlier this week via social media.
Nigel Winterburn has urged Mikel Arteta to keep faith with his promising youngsters
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