Chelsea ruled out of Philippe Coutinho chase because they have another priority signing

Chelsea will not go after Philippe Coutinho in the next transfer window because they are prioritising signing a striker instead, says Spanish football expert Guillem Balague. Chelsea are one of a number of clubs who are interested in signing Coutinho from Barcelona. The Brazil international is unlikely to have his loan spell at Bayern Munich extended by the Bundesliga giants.

Coutinho has struggled at Barca since his £142million move from Liverpool in January 2018.

Balague says only Premier League clubs would be able to afford both the fee and wages for the 27-year-old.

However, he says Chelsea should be ruled out of the running because they will focus on signing a striker instead to help lessen the load on Tammy Abraham.

“The story of Coutinho is quite simple,” Balague said on his YouTube channel.

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“Bayern Munich are not going to renew the contract that they’ve got.

“They don’t want to keep him any longer on loan and the links have been with Chelsea.

“Does Lampard like Coutinho? Of course he does. Does he need Coutinho? He doesn’t need Coutinho.

“So Chelsea are not going to go for Coutinho, they need a striker, that’s their priority.

“As I said, only the both Manchester clubs or Chelsea would be able, according to the top agent I’ve asked, to pay for some kind of deal for Coutinho.

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“Barcelona would lose money for certain, nobody’s going to be able to pay £100m for anybody really.

“But neither Manchester City or United need Coutinho right now and also he’s earning €14m net in his salary a year.

“So he’s going to have to review his wages big time otherwise he stays at Barcelona.”

Meanwhile, Balague has reaffirmed his information that so far Leicester are the only Premier League club to have officially expressed their interest for Coutinho.

However, he says the player is keen on moving to a bigger club than the Foxes.

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“The only club in the Premier League that has shown interest in Coutinho has been Leicester,” Balague added.

“Leicester City of course with Brendan Rodgers who brought Coutinho to Liverpool, had a very good relationship with him.

“The problem is at the moment Coutinho and his representatives think he should go to a bigger club, that’s what I’ve been told.

“Do not discount it to happen because it’s the only club that has shown real interest for Coutinho right now.”

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