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Soccer transfer rumors: Philippe Coutinho - Barcelona hits snag

The Brazilian who currently plays for Liverpool has been pursued by the Spanish giants all summer.
Barcelona are pushing hard to acquire Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool. (Photo: Getty Images)

Philippe Coutinho might be headed to Barcelona, but it won't be without enormous resistance from Liverpool. 

The Brazilian midfielder has been the object of the La Liga side's affection for most of the summer and have followed him quite closely. Yet the Merseysiders have been able to retain him throughout the offseason and into the early parts of the Premier League season. 

They have just hours left to hold onto him, though Barcelona continues to lurk. 

Spanish football expert Guillem Balague has told Rhys Turrell of the Daily Star that the Catalonians are planning "one final raid" for Coutinho, who is still just 25 years old and in the midst of the prime of his career. 

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Coutinho has made 158 appearances for Liverpool since joining the club from Espanyol in 2013. He has 43 goals in those 158 appearances as he really began to hit his stride last season:

A clinical striker of the ball with the vision and intelligence to be the engine of a midfield, it's clear to see why Barcelona wants to add Coutinho to its ranks. 

There is a chance they can get him still and it all depends on a young French midfielder. 

Monaco's 21-year-old man Thomas Lemar, who was being pursued by Arsenal during Alexis Sanchez's rumored exit to Manchester City, has made it known that he wants to join Liverpool, via Sky Sports.

Should Liverpool acquire Lemar in the final hours, it could open the door for Coutinho to head to Spain. 

 
 
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