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Spanish giants Barcelona are having the worst possible transfer window, having lost Neymar Jr with a month of the window to spare. They are now unable to find a replacement with the clubs all over Europe reluctant to sell their top players this late in the transfer window. Though they have signed Ousmane Dembele from Borussia Dortmund for £135.5m, it is an open secret that he is not someone who can replace Neymar immediately. Arguably though, he is capable of doing it after a few years.
The former La Liga champions have been looking at Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho, who may yet make the switch. The Brazilian playmaker has reportedly told Jurgen Klopp that he does not want to play at Anfield again and if that is true, Barcelona might be able to get their man before the deadline day.
However, they are also keeping their options open and reports claim that they are looking to sign Argentine sensation Paulo Dybala this summer. The story claims that Lionel Messi has been promised the signature of Dybala as a part of the club’s efforts to get him to sign a new deal before the end of the year, when he will be without a contract.
So, should Barcelona also spend on Dybala? If they can only afford one more player after signing Dembele, who should they spend on? Coutinho or Dybala?
The 23-year old Argentine international has established himself as one of the most effective players in front of goal and helped Juventus to a league title and a place in the Champions League final last season. He has constantly been linked with an exit, with Barcelona and Real Madrid both linked with a move for him recently.
Playing most of his time as a support striker in Italy, Dybala has 47 goals and 27 assists in 127 appearances in Serie A to add to his 5 in 18 in the Champions League. He is a more regular goal scorer than Coutinho, who has just 34 goals and 31 assists in 138 appearances in England.
Both players are capable of the spectacular and will fit right into the system at Camp Nou but Dybala is a more natural replacement for Neymar than the Brazilian from Anfield. The 25-year old Coutinho can create chances on a regular basis but is not someone who will score 20+ goals a season.
That is something Dybala is looking to achieve as a 23-year old this season. He is a more effective player in front of goal while his dribbling and passing abilities will make sure that Barcelona do not miss Neymar this season. Coutinho, if bought, will be used in a slightly deeper role than as a winger, while Dybala can slot in as an SS with Luis Suarez or Lionel Messi playing up top. The Argentine connection will also help but it is to be seen if Juventus let him leave.