Valverde: Why I Dropped Coutinho
Ernesto Valverde: Why I Dropped Philippe Coutinho
FC Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde has explained why he decided to drop former Liverpool star Philippe Coutinho to the bench for the Blaugrana's 2-0 win over Eibar on Saturday.
The Brazil international, who is ineligible to play for the Spanish giants in the UEFA Champions League, started in his club's goalless draw with Getafe last weekend, but lost his place to Andres Iniesta for the match against Eibar.
After the fixture, Valverde explained why he decided to drop the €160 million (R2.31 billion) signing to the bench.
"I think it was best for my team to try to win," the Spanish tactician said, as quoted by the Daily Express.
"Last week Coutinho started, Iniesta didn't, so this week Iniesta started.
"It's true that, on Tuesday, we have another match, but, for me, the most important thing was this match.
"On Tuesday, let's see. I know Coutinho cannot play, but we will do something."
The 25-year-old has made seven appearances for the Spanish side since his arrival at the Camp Nou in January, and has scored one goal for the Blaugrana so far.
Do you think Coutinho will go on to become a vital member of this Barca squad? Have your say in the comments section below.