Aston Villa are keen to sign Philippe Coutinho this month, with head coach Steven Gerrard describing the Brazil international as a “world-class individual and player”.
The 29-year-old is open to a change this month and a number of Premier League clubs are showing interest in the Barcelona player, including Villa.
Sources in Spain say Villa is now in advanced negotiations with details of a permanent move thereafter yet to be worked out. Villa did not comment on the situation.
Gerrard said on Thursday: “I appreciate that his name is out there and that he’s linked with Aston Villa, but there are also five other Premier League clubs and others across Europe who are linked with him.
“I can understand that because you are talking about a world class individual and player.
“He’s a great footballer.
“Sharing a pitch with Coutinho was a great experience because he was at a level that few footballers have reached. His imagination, his creation, as well as some of the best moments are amazing. His name speaks for itself. I can’t say more than that. “
Barcelona want to take Coutinho’s high salary off the book so they can record a new £ 55million signing with Ferran Torres.
The Spanish club expect him to move to England this month and Villa are the first to sign him.
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