International

Coutinho struggles continue as Barca suffer shock defeat

2019-01-11 08:16
Philippe Coutinho (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Philippe Coutinho came in for criticism as Barcelona suffered a shock 2-1 defeat away to Levante in the first leg of their Copa del Rey last-16 tie, on Thursday.

The Catalan giants paid the price for resting some of their biggest stars as Erick Cabaco and Borja Mayoral scored within the opening 20 minutes to give the hosts a surprise lead at half-time.

Brazilian midfielder, Coutinho gave his side a lifeline with a late penalty after making a rare start.

Lionel Messi was one of the several omissions from Ernesto Vaverde's much-changed side, with the second leg taking place on Thursday.

Despite scoring, Coutinho's performance came in for criticism from fans after making a £145 million move from Liverpool last season.

The 26-year-old's situation at the club has become so dire that reports in Spain suggest that Barcelona are looking to offload him back to Liverpool to make way for Neymar.

 

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