Chelsea could pull plug on move for Philippe Coutinho

Marilyn Dubinski Chelsea FC

Chelsea may not be willing to offer Phillipe Coutinho an escape route from Barcelona this summer, with the Premier League side keeping an eye on other targets.

Coutinho – who joined the LaLiga side from Liverpool in January 2018 in a £145million deal – is reportedly free to leave the Nou Camp this summer for the right price.

The Brazilian is currently on loan at Bayern Munich but has not done enough in the Bundesliga to convince the league leaders to make his move permanent.

Philippe Coutinho may not be offered an escape route by Chelsea from Barcelona this summer

That has alerted a number of clubs across Europe – including those in the Premier League – with both Chelsea and Everton heavily linked.

Reports had suggested that Coutinho was ‘very close’ to agreeing a move to Stamford Bridge, however it appears Frank Lampard’s other transfer plans could scupper a move. 

According to The Athletic, Chelsea are keeping a very close eye on Bayer Leverkusen forward Kai Havertz.

Seven years younger than the former Inter star, 20-year-old Havertz is one of the most highly-rated young players in Germany at present and is on the radar of Chelsea.

Bayer Leverkusen forward Kai Havertz is also reported to be a top target at Stamford Bridge

With the Premier League side already having confirmed the signing of Hakim Ziyech from Ajax, the appetite for splurging at least £79m on Coutinho may no longer be there.

It is still even a possibility that he has a future at Barcelona, with boss Quique Setien suggesting that he could find a role in his set-up on his return from Germany. 

‘He’s a great player and I really like him,’ the Barca boss told RAC1.