Brazilian Phillipe Coutinho has finally signed a five-year contract with Spanish giants Barcelona. The player was officially presented to the media on Monday, January 8.
At a fee of over $192 million, he becomes the third most expensive transfer ever after Neymar Jr. and Kylian Mbappe, both at Paris St Germain. He now holds the club’s record of most expensive signing ahead of new Barca team mate Ousmane Dembele, who cost the Catalans 105 million euros ($126.35 million).
Coutinho said on Sunday (January 7) that he is very happy at his move and looks forward to playing within a star-studded squad.
?— FC Barcelona (FCBarcelona) January 8, 2018
Phil_Coutinho: "I want to thank the president and everyone who has made it possible. I am very happy, it's a dream come true and I hope to be up to the job on the field" #CoutinhoDay pic.twitter.com/rz3DgfQugp
The player was making his first official appearance as a Barcelona player, visiting the team’s shop and watching a shirt being printed bearing his name.
Earlier, coach Ernesto Valverde said Coutinho’s versatility makes him a great acquisition for Barcelona following his 142-million-pound ($192.57-million) move from Liverpool.
The coach has yet to decide where the new signing will fit into his fluid side, who are unbeaten in the Liga and Champions League.
Barca beat Levante 3-0 at home on Sunday with goals from Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Paulinho, to stay nine points clear at the top of the La Liga standings and after the game Coutinho put on a club tracksuit to pose for photographs at the Nou Camp.