Aston Villa have completed the loan signing of Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona after the Brazilian successfully obtained a work permit.
Coutinho joined Barcelona from Liverpool in 2018 in a deal worth £146 million, but has struggled at the Nou Camp and spent the 2019-20 season on loan at Bayern Munich.
The deal also includes an option to make the deal permanent for £33 million ($45m) in the summer, according to reports.
“Philippe Coutinho arrived at Bodymoor Heath on Tuesday afternoon to complete his move to Aston Villa,” a club statement read.
“The Brazil international, 29, travelled straight to the club’s training complex having landed in Birmingham, coming after he successfully completed his medical and obtained a work permit.
“Coutinho will spend the rest of this season on loan at Villa Park from FC Barcelona, with the agreement including an option to buy.”
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 teammate Steven Gerrard.
Despite helping Barca win La Liga in 2018 and 2019, he never found the form he displayed in the Premier League.e Nou Camp and spent the 2019-20 season 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, who spent time in France while waiting for the work permit to be processed, becomes Gerrard’s first signing at Villa since he joined from Rangers in November to replace Dean Smith.
“It’s a pleasure to be here; it’s a great club,” Coutinho said on www.avfc.co.uk.
“I spoke a lot with the manager, with Stevie, and he told me about the club and his ambitions. I’m very happy to be here and I’m looking to enjoy my football.
“I’ve known Stevie for a long time. I played with him and I learned a lot from him.
“He’s someone who I have big admiration for. I hope to do my best here. For sure, I will work hard, and I hope together we can do good work.”
Coutinho could be handed his Villa debut against Manchester United on Saturday and is confident he can again make a big impression on the Premier League.
“I’m looking forward to meeting the fans, to being on the pitch. I know and I feel that they’re happy that I’m here,” he said.
“I want to repay that on the pitch and enjoy my football. I’m looking forward to being on the pitch.
“I always want to be at my best, doing my work. That’s what I work hard for every day. I hope it will be a great rest of the season here.”