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Ex-Barcelona president Bartomeu: The coaches wanted Coutinho

Former Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has defended their signing of Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool.

Bartomeu admits they moved for Coutinho as a replacement for Andres Iniesta after his move to Vissel Kobe.

He said, "He's a rookie the coaches wanted. It started to become clearer when Iniesta told us it would be his last season. We tried to convince him to continue for another year but he preferred not to do so and we looked for replacements.

"Coutinho is a proven player and it is true that (Lionel) Messi, (Luis) Suárez and others insisted he was a great signing who was going to be Iniesta's natural replacement from the first minute of his departure."


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