Former Bayern Munich midfielder Philippe Coutinho scored an 85th minute goal in FC Barcelona’s recent 3-1 league win over Valencia at the Camp Nou. Coutinho had come on as a sub for Ansu Fati in the 59th minute of the match and his goal was his first since last November.
The Brazilian missed the better part of last season through a meniscus injury and just hasn’t really been able to come to full fruition ever since he left Liverpool back in 2018.
Coutinho’s had unfortunate injury luck since then, but the current financial status Barcelona is in hasn’t made matters any more promising for the Brazilian, but he was incredibly relieved to have found the back of the net against Valencia. Speaking after the match in the Catalans, he reflected on how much he’s had to endure the past couple of seasons and said that he’s truly suffered during those periods (Sport Bild). During his goal celebration, you could see just how much it meant to him. The emotion was clearly evident and figurative weight off of his shoulders had been lifted.
“It was a cry of anger because I had to score to gain confidence. Nobody knows how much I suffered. I feel the same lust or even more after all that has happened. It’s a scar that makes me stronger. I have an even greater desire to be successful and the best Coutinho,” the midfielder explained.
Barcelona currently sits in 7th place in the La Liga table and they’ve yet to record a point in the Champions League in the wake of Lionel Messi leaving for Paris Saint-Germain, but Coutinho feels that Ronald Koeman’s side can get back on the right track and salvage what’s been an incredibly disappointing start to the season by their standards. “We know it’s not the situation we want, but we ourselves are the only ones who are capable of getting it back. The team is involved and we showed that against Valencia today. We gave 100 percent, but when 150 percent is required, we will call that too,” Coutinho urged.
Coutinho’s contract with Barcelona expires in the summer of 2023, and hopefully for his case, he’s able to stay injury free for most of this season, especially with the World Cup coming up next winter for Brazil. He’s not been a regular starter for Koeman, but his goal against Valencia will certainly give him a necessary confidence boost. At Bayern, as well as Liverpool, he’s shown what he’s capable of when he’s firing on all cylinders. He was an integral piece in Hansi Flick’s 2019.20, treble-winning side, scoring 11 goals and providing 9 assists from 38 appearances across all competitions. He had missed 9 Bundesliga and 1 DFB-Pokal matches towards the end of the season with an ankle problem, but his loan had been extended at the time so that he could be in Bayern’s Champions League squad for the bubble in Portugal. He scored a brace and provided an assist in Bayern’s famous 8-2 thrashing of Barcelona in Lisbon.