Lionel Messi's plan B for Barcelona

Published On: December 31, 2017 04:02 PM NPT

BARCELONA, Dec 31: Barcelona are yet to replace Neymar following his £200million move to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer.

Philippe Coutinho is understood to be the La Liga club’s top target, having attempted to bring him in at the start of the season.

However, Liverpool have been unwilling to do business despite the 25-year-old handing in a transfer request.

And Spanish outlet Don Balon claim Barca star Lionel Messi is prepared to be disappointed again in January and has put forward an alternative.

The report says Leon Goretzka is the player Messi has recommended to the Catalan side, should a deal for Coutinho fail to materialise.

The Germany international is one of the hottest prospects in the Bundesliga and would be available on a cut-price deal.

He is out of contract with Schalke in the summer, meaning Domenico Tedesco’s side could be forced to cash in next month.

Goretzka admitted this month he would be making a final decision about his future in January.

“I have to consider a million things. I am a person who is very meticulous in such decisions. I play through all the scenarios. So I need time.

"There doesn't exist a deadline, but I think we are in the final phase.

"'The final decision will be made in January."

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