19 Jan 2022

Steven Gerrard hails Philippe Coutinho as ‘invaluable’ after successful medical

Steven Gerrard hails Philippe Coutinho as ‘invaluable’ after successful medical

Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard says the loan signing of Philippe Coutinho “will be invaluable” after the Brazilian completed his medical.

Villa announced on their official website that Coutinho’s medical was successful and he is currently in France obtaining a work permit.

Gerrard told “His presence will be invaluable given injuries and the AFCON tournament have reduced our attacking options.

“He is a player I enjoyed playing with previously and I know the rest of the squad here at Aston Villa will benefit from his quality and experience.”

Gerrard said that he hoped Coutinho will join his new team-mates on Wednesday at the club’s Bodymoor Heath training ground.

The Premier League club have signed Coutinho on loan for the rest of the season from Barcelona and have the option to buy the former Liverpool midfielder.

Barcelona confirmed Villa will pay part of Coutinho’s wages as he returns to the Premier League after four years and teams back up with former Liverpool team-mate Gerrard.

Coutinho joined Barcelona from Liverpool in 2018 in a deal worth £146million but has struggled at the Nou Camp and spent 2019-20 on loan at Bayern Munich.

Despite helping Barca win LaLiga in 2018 and 2019 he never found the form he displayed in the Premier League.

Coutinho becomes Gerrard’s first signing at Villa since he joined from Rangers in November to replace Dean Smith.

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