Philippe Coutinho has joined Aston Villa on loan from Barcelona until the end of the
season. La Liga giant Barcelona and Aston Villa have reached an agreement on
his transfer to the Premier League club on Friday. The agreement, subject to the
player passing his medical and obtaining a work permit, includes an option to
make the transfer permanent.

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The 29-year-old
Brazil international had joined Barcelona from Liverpool on a £146m deal
in January 2018, but as the midfielder failed to impress at Camp Nou, the La
Liga side had sent him to Bayern Munich on loan for the 2019-20 season. In May 2021, Barcelona again tried to send Coutinho back to Liverpool, where he
excelled originally. But as Liverpool did not join the negotiation, Barcelona
had to search for other options.

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On Friday,
Barcelona finally found a club interested in the Brazilian star in Aston Villa.
Coutinho will be with Villa till the end of the season. He will now travel to
Birmingham in the next 48 hours to complete medical and obtain permission to
play in England amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Villa will pay part of the player’s
wages during the loan agreement, Barcelona said in a statement.

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Coutinho, who lacked opportunities and was accused of underperforming with the
Spanish club, had been looking forward to returning to England to play football
regularly. He sees Aston Villa as an ambitious club that are working on
building a strong team for the future. But Sky Sports reported that the
Brazilian is also interested to play for his former Premier League club,
Liverpool. Liverpool, however, has not yet expressed an interest in Coutinho as they have multiple options for the positions.

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At Aston Villa,
Coutinho will be able to play under manager Steven Gerrard whom he knows very
well.  Speaking on Thursday ahead of
signing Coutinho, manager Steven Gerrard said, “Sixty-three caps for Brazil,
a serial winner, was incredible at Liverpool, so I can understand why he’s
linked to a lot of football clubs,” said Gerrard.

Coutinho started
his senior career in Serie A with Inter Milan. But there too he had to spend
three seasons on loan with Vasco da Gama and Espanyol, respectively.

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In 2013, he had
joined Liverpool and earned fame at Anfield, scoring 41 goals in 152
appearances. Coutinho was also renowned for providing crucial assists to the strikers. Now as he joined Villa, who
are currently ranked 13th on the Premier League points table, his main focus will be on
improving the club’s performance.