Arsene Wenger’s opinion on Philippe Coutinho amid Arsenal transfer link

Philippe Coutinho has been linked with a move to Arsenal as Barcelona desperately try to find a new club for him this month.

Mikel Arteta is a fan of the Brazilian, although prioritised signing Willian after he became available on a free, and currently doesn't have the funds for Coutinho.

Coutinho's career peaked when he completed a £142million move from Liverpool to Barcelona in 2018.

Since then it has dramatically gone down hill, with the Brazilian falling out of favour in Spain before being sent on loan to Bayern Munich.

Things haven't exactly gone to plan in Germany either, and Coutinho is in need of a new club this summer if he wants to play regular football next season.

According to reports from Spain, Barcelona consider Arsenal to be a good fit for the Brazilian.

The Catalan giants need Coutinho off their wage bill, and the midfielder allegedly doesn't want to play for Barcelona anymore.

A loan move would fix both these problems, and Arsenal would be getting a great player as part of the deal.

Arsene Wenger was Gunners manager for 22 years before he stepped down in 2018, and worked with hundreds of players in his time.

He never discussed Coutinho in great detail while he was Arsenal boss, but did criticise the way in which he pushed through a transfer to Barcelona.

Interestingly, he commented on the way in which the Brazilian seemingly disrupted the Liverpool dressing room.

When asked in the press in 2018: "Are you glad you haven't had Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Alexis Sanchez hand in a transfer request like Philippe Coutinho?"

Wenger responded: "Yes, I am very happy about that. It's important you have a serene atmosphere inside and clarity about your commitment.

"It's important the players aren't half in and half out and they are completely in."

Arteta has made steady progress at Arsenal since taking the reins from Unai Emery.

And one of the things he has had to do is isolate players he believes have been more disruptive than positive.

He outlined his plans to do this when he first took the job.

"I have my ideas that I would like to keep to myself because I have to corroborate them when I see them act, when I see them behave, when I see them live together," said Arteta, in his very first Arsenal press conference.

"I want to do things my way but by convincing them that it's the right way for everybody to live better. Everybody has to respect each other first of all, and I want people who are accountable for what I'm asking for them to do.

"I don't want them hiding, I want people to take responsibility for their jobs and I want people who deliver passion and energy in the football club.

"Anyone who doesn't buy into this, or that has a negative effect or whatever, is not good enough for this environment or this culture.

"There are things to change, absolutely, because they're not performing at the level that we expect them to. I will have to help them and to help them I need to know what's happening, I need to understand how they're feeling, what they're lacking.

"If I get to reach that point, then I can help them. Then they will trust me and then they will follow me."

Both Mesut Ozil and Matteo Guendouzi found themselves frozen out in north London last season, for apparently failing to adhere to Arteta's strict rules.

The latter has since been linked with a transfer away from Arsenal this month, while the Gunners are preparing to offer Ozil a pay-out to release him from his £18million contract.

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