Philippe Coutinho has had a memorable campaign on loan at Bayern Munich from Barcelona, with the Brazilian magician casting his spell on the Bundesliga and earning a league and cup double.
O Magico scored eight goals and provided six assists in 23 Bundesliga appearances as Bayern stormed to an eighth straight league title. He had a hand in a goal every 101 minutes of action, during which he completed 85 per cent of his 781 passes, and was also involved in another three goals as the German champions recorded the best group stage in UEFA Champions League history.
bundesliga.com has picked out the highlights of the Brazilian’s 2019/20 Bundesliga campaign at the Allianz Arena…
Watch: Philippe Coutinho's Bundesliga mixtape
1) Arrival in Munich, 19 August 2019
As statements of intent go, they don’t get much bigger than the one Bayern made on 19 August 2019 when they announced the arrival of Coutinho. Having flourished at Liverpool, the Brazil international won back-to-back La Liga titles in Spain following his move there in January 2018, and was brought to Germany as the defending Bundesliga champions sought to strengthen an attacking department that had said farewell to Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery and James Rodriguez at the end of the 2018/19 season. Robert Lewandowski hailed the club’s latest recruit as someone whose “final pass is insane”, while Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic was by no means exaggerating when he described Coutinho as “a world-class player with great ability”. He did not disappoint…
Watch: Coutinho's official unveiling as a Bayern player
2) vs. Cologne, 21 September 2019
After making his Bundesliga debut as a second-half substitute in the 3-0 win at Schalke on Matchday 2, Coutinho was handed his first start in the 6-1 rout of Mainz a week later. Further encouraging appearances against RB Leipzig in the league and Red Star Belgrade in the UEFA Champions League followed, before the ex-Inter Milan and Liverpool composer penned his Bayern Symphony No.1. Named in the starting line-up for the second time for the Matchday 5 meeting with Cologne, Coutinho scored his first Bundesliga goal as he won and then converted a penalty – at the second attempt when a retake was ordered for encroachment – after usual taker Lewandowski, himself on a hat-trick, allowed the new signing the honours. He crowned his maiden strike with an assist as he teed up Ivan Perisic to round off the 4-0 win.
Watch: Coutinho on Lewandowski's penalty gesture
3) vs. Paderborn, 28 September 2019
By now Niko Kovac's first pick in the No.10 role ahead of Thomas Müller, Coutinho repeated his trick of a goal and assist the following week against Paderborn. He formed a prolific double act with Serge Gnabry as the Brazilian first teed up his German teammate before the roles were reversed to put the champions on course for a 3-2 victory over the promoted side. He had found his feet in German football, and would start every remaining league and European game under Kovac.
4) vs. Werder Bremen, 14 December 2019
Coutinho's standout display fell under the watchful gaze of Kovac's replacement, Hansi Flick. He was at the heart of the champions’ 6-1 drubbing of Werder Bremen, scoring one and setting up another in the five minutes before half-time to turn around a 1-0 deficit. His audacious no-look lob over Jiri Pavlenka - the December Goal of the Month winner - preceded a smart cut-back for Müller and a quite stunning long-range hit. A hat-trick of goals and brace of assists: it remains his most productive 90-minute shift to date.
Watch: Coutinho's long-range stunner recreated using FIFA 20
5) vs. Hoffenheim, 29 February 2020
Coutinho orchestrated another big win on Matchday 24. The Brazil international curled home with the aid of a deflection from his favoured left side to give Bayern a 4-0 lead inside 33 minutes, before ghosting into space to turn home a Müller cross from the right soon after the restart. It was his run from the halfway line that allowed Corentin Tolisso to tee up Leon Goretzka for his team's sixth, and he was unfortunate not to add to the one-sided scoreline himself. The game was his 21st of 23 Bundesliga outings - a number that would surely have been greater but for ankle problems in the latter part of the campaign.