Aston Villa ‘flop’ now ‘closing in’ on transfer after double rejection

The latest on the Philippe Coutinho transfer saga as the Aston Villa star ‘closes in’ on a move abroad.

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Qatar Stars League side Al-Duhail SC are closing in on the signing of Aston Villa attacking midfielder Philippe Coutinho on a season-long loan deal, according to a reputable report.

The Brazilian was heavily linked with a move away on Deadline Day last week but nothing was ever completed. Now, though, it appears he’s on his way out.

As the transfer window in Qatar doesn’t slam shut until September 18, there has been plenty of time for the details of the move to be ironed out and it’s getting closer.

Fabrizio Romano reports Al-Duhail have finally sealed an agreement with Villa to take Coutinho on a temporary basis, covering his entire salary for the 2023/24 campaign.

It’s claimed Coutinho rejected approaches from Turkish Süper Lig side Besiktas and Spanish La Liga outfit Real Betis in order to move to Qatar.

It was somewhat of a dream come true when the former Liverpool man headed to Villa Park from Barcelona in January of last year but injuries have halted his progress.

The 31-year-old has scored just one competitive goal in 2023 and that came in the 4-2 defeat to Arsenal in February – a game in which he went off injured.

Pre-season was very promising this time around and a couple of cameos off the bench excited supporters but that was once again ended prematurely.

Coutinho went off with an agonising hamstring pull against Everton recently and hasn’t played since. Villa fans will be hoping his season abroad helps rekindle his form and fitness.

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