Finally, Philippe Coutinho has become a Barcelona player after completing a £145 million deal.
The transfer saga finally reached its conclusion, but many Liverpool fans have criticised the timing with them thriving in the Champions League and sitting inside the Premier League’s top four places.
Barcelona are riding high at the top of La Liga as well and seeing as Coutinho is unable to play for them in Europe, it surely would have made sense for all parties if they had waited until the summer.
All parties apart from Coutinho himself, it would seem.
The Brazilian playmaker is said to have had his heart set on the move since the interest first materialised last summer and it seems that he did everything he could to ensure the move went through.
Rumours of a transfer request last summer and refusing to play for the club again in January have done the rounds, but now he has gotten his wish.
After being announced as a Barcelona player on Sunday, the club posted a short video with their record signing and he gave his first words since joining the club.
Addressing fans on Instagram, Coutinho said in English: “Hi Barca fans. I am here. It is a dream come true and I hope to see you tomorrow.”
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) January 7, 2018
It’s fair to say a “dream come true” isn’t what loyal Reds fans wanted to hear. In fact, it seems some of them were waiting for a personal message.
Surprised Coutinho hasn't thanked Liverpool or the fans yet or apologised for how it ended
— wɘ⅃ (@PassLikeParis) January 7, 2018
Look how happy Coutinho is. Makes me sad. All that stress that is now relief in that smile. Dream come true for him, nightmare for us. pic.twitter.com/KzpKVQHAbe
— Hendo_fan (@TikkaMoSalah) January 7, 2018
£142,000,000 for @Phil_Coutinho. Was great watching you develop from a scruffy looking gem of a talent, to what you are today, a world class magician. You deserve to achieve your dream but it's a shame how you went about making your dream come true. Adios Phillipe
— Sham (@LFC_RedBlooded) January 6, 2018
Of course it’s a dream come true for Coutinho.. mans going to be playing with Messi and Suarez are u mad.. Liverpool made him the player he is tho not even a single msg to the fans
— Adil Awan (@786Adil786) January 7, 2018
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp didn’t beat around the bush when asked about finally acquiescing to Coutinho’s dream over the weekend.
The German coach said in a statement: “It is with great reluctance that we — as a team and club — prepare to say farewell to a good friend, a wonderful person and a fantastic player in Philippe Coutinho.
“It is no secret that Philippe has wanted this move to happen since July, when Barcelona first made their interest known. Philippe was insistent with me, the owners and even his team-mates this was a move he was desperate to make happen.
“I can tell the Liverpool supporters that we, as a club, have done everything within our means to convince Philippe that remaining part of LFC was as attractive as moving to Spain, but he is 100 per cent certain his future — and that of his family — belongs at Barcelona. It is his dream and I am now convinced there is nothing left at our disposal to change his mind.”