Coutinho out of Japan clash, could feature against England

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Philippe Coutinho is expected to miss Brazil's upcoming friendly with Japan due to a muscle injury, but he could be in line to return against England according to national team doctor Rodrigo Lasmar.

The Liverpool star last played in their 4-1 defeat to Tottenham on October 22, with a thigh problem forcing him to miss their following three matches.

Brazil coach Tite called Coutinho up in spite of the injury and could potentially be without him for both matches, with the 25-year-old yet to return to ball-based training.

Team doctor Lasmar thinks Friday's meeting with Japan will come too soon, but they are focusing all of their efforts on making sure he is able to feature at Wembley the following Tuesday.

"Coutinho had a muscle injury in the adductor of the left thigh," he told Globo Esporte.

"He is in the final phase of recovery. We knew that he would not be fully fit, but we chose to make his final recovery with us.

"The possibility of him playing against Japan is remote, but we work to make sure he's available against England.

"He may not be able to participate [against Japan]. If he can, he could stay on the bench and play for a few minutes.

"But it's a small chance. Our focus is to get him back for the second game."