Steven Gerrard, not only a legend of Liverpool but of world football as well, has said that Philippe Coutinho’s time at Barcelona is up and that he needs to move to Aston Villa for good. The 29-year-old superstar had a rather turbulent ride with Barca and is now contemplating a full move back to England however, the final decision will be made by Villa. The Brazilian maestro worked with Gerrard back in the Merseyside team but now he is working under his management and is loving life again. The legend wants him to stay, Barca wants to sell him and it could be a win-win situation for everybody.
The mercurial superstar was brought into the Blaugrana side in 2018 for 160 million euros and he remains as the club’s most expensive transfer. However, although he was the most expensive player ever, he could not provide much on the field. In his first full season with the club, he only managed to score 11 goals in all competitions while providing only five assists. He would then be loaned out to Bayern Munich in the following season but he would not fare any better there either although he did win the Champions League. His last season with the club was another failure however, this time it was due to an injury which took away most of his games.
Thus, he became the club’s most expensive mistake and with the player reaching 30 years of age, his valuation and demand have dropped down a lot. He is no longer considered as a world-class player however, with the Claret and Blues managing to revive his old form, there is a chance for Barca to make some money off of him.
Philippe Coutinho’s potential return to Barcelona is unlikely
Gerrard really wants to keep him and in a recent interview he said this about the player:
"“Phil was successful at Barcelona but he had difficult periods as well, He got to the stage where he needed a change of scenery and a different movie,”“We want to be that movie for him because if we want to get to where we want to be, we need to build it around talents like Phil, because at his best he is a high-level player.”“All I can do is give my opinion to (sporting director) Johan Lange, (chief executive) Christian Purslow and the owners. They are watching the games and they will make the final decision. Phil has shown what he is capable of so far.”Source Goal"
A move away from Barcelona would be huge for the player and Villa would gain a huge intimidating figure in their team as well. The exact amount set in the clause is unknown at the moment however, it cannot be a huge amount. The fact of the matter is that if the Brazilian returns to Barca, he will most likely be benched and will leave on a free transfer in 2023 however, if the Catalans can sell him off now, it will be much better for them financially.
Should Philippe Coutinho return to Barcelona?