Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard will tell the board to make Philippe Coutinho’s loan move permanent in the summer, Football Insider report.
The Lowdown: Leeds scare
Coutinho starred at Villa Park on Wednesday evening against Leeds United, scoring an equaliser and providing two assists for Jacob Ramsey in the first half.
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The Brazilian was quieter in the second half, though, and went down injured following a long-range effort.
He was then replaced by Ashley Young in the closing stages, with Gregg Evans stating he was ‘very quiet’ after going down holding his left knee.
The Latest: Source shares update
A Villa source informed the site that the option to buy fee stands at £33.7m, with Gerrard having no hesitation in telling the board to activate the clause at the end of the season.
Ashley Preece has even stated that the £33m option isn’t a fixed fee, so Villa may well be able to negotiate a lower figure with Barcelona.
The Verdict: No brainer
Coutinho has already shown his class in the Midlands and averages a goal or an assist every 44 minutes under Gerrard.
He’s already way out in front when it comes to average match rating in the Villa squad, as per WhoScored, and still just 29 years of age, a permanent move seems to be a no brainer.
It’s exciting to know that Barcelona are desperate to get the playmaker off the books in the summer, so you’d expect that Johan Lange will be on the phone looking to lower the £33.7m option. Hopefully, he can do just that, which will then give Gerrard more scope for new players in the summer.
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