Ernesto Valverde: 'Barcelona do not need to alter tactics'

Valverde: 'Barca don't need to alter tactics'
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Ernesto Valverde says that "things are going to be very similar" in terms of tactics, despite the arrival of Philippe Coutinho and the return of Ousmane Dembele.

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has insisted that he does not have to change formation to accommodate club-record signing Philippe Coutinho.

The Brazilian playmaker must wait to make his debut for the Catalan giants, having been ruled out until early February with a minor injury following his £142m arrival from Liverpool.

Valverde now has some time to consider how he will shoehorn Coutinho into his side, while previous record purchase Ousmane Dembele is also back in contention after a three-month layoff, and the Spanish coach does not expect to tinker with his tactics.

"Coutinho can't play yet, Dembele can play on both sides, but regardless of small changes things are going to be very similar," he told reporters.

"Coutinho is a player we think can help us. Each player is different and brings something new. He scores, he can shoot. He can play inside or outside and we hope he can contribute and help us to be better.

"It's a coach's job to speak about his team. We're competitive, in three competitions, at the greatest club in the world. We're always trying to win and make our fans happy. We think our players are the best, that's the way it is."

Barca return to action on Thursday evening with a Copa del Rey last-16 tie against Celta Vigo, with the score locked at 1-1 following last week's first leg at Balaidos.

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Roberto Firmino celebrates scoring with Philippe Coutinho during the Premier League game between West Bromwich Albion and Liverpool on April 16, 2017
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CBarcelona38289199297093
2Atletico MadridAtletico382310558223679
3Real Madrid382210694445076
4Valencia38227965382773
5Villarreal38187135750761
6Real Betis38186146061-160
7Sevilla38177144958-958
8Getafe381510134233955
9EibarEibar38149154450-651
10GironaGirona38149155059-951
11Espanyol381213133642-649
12Real Sociedad38147176659749
13Celta Vigo381310155960-149
14AlavesAlaves38152214050-1047
15Levante381113144458-1446
16Athletic Bilbao381013154149-843
17Leganes38127193451-1743
RDeportivo La CorunaDeportivo38611213876-3829
RLas PalmasLas Palmas3857262474-5022
RMalaga3855282461-3720

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