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Barcelona to give up on Coutinho and focus on German duo

Barcelona are becoming resigned to being forced to give up on signing Liverpool midfielder Philippe Coutinho.

Sport says Barcelona have lined up German playmakers Julian Brandt and Max Meyer as alternatives to Coutinho ahead of the January transfer window.

The Catalan giants want to bolster their attacking options when the transfer window re-opens and while they haven't shelved their interest in Coutinho, they are looking at alternative targets.

Two members of the club's staff, Robert Fernandez and Urbano Ortega, attended Leverkusen's 2-2 draw with Wolfsburg on Sunday and monitored the performance of Germany international Brandt.

Barca are also keen on Schalke's Meyer. The 22-year-old is under contract until 2018.

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Paul Vegas

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