Guided wave phased-array focusing techniques have been studied and applied in the long-range guided wave inspection of industrial pipelines. Advantages include longer inspection distance, greater wave penetration power and higher detection sensitivity. For reasons of protection, safety and thermal efficiency, a large percentage of pipes are coated and/or encased and buried underground. A phased-array focusing study for guided waves is now considered on pipelines with viscoelastic coatings. In this paper, longitudinal guided wave focusing as well as axisymmetric wave propagation is studied in a bare pipe and a pipe with a viscoelastic coating. A finite element model is studied. First, an investigation on whether the coating has an affect on the axisymmetric guided wave propagation is reported. Based on the result of a single channel, phased array focusing with 8-channel segments is studied. This study provides a very useful tool and guidance for the analysis and examination of guided wave focusing in a real field pipeline under various coating and environmental conditions.