Coutinho sends emotional message to Barcelona after Villa transfer
Aston Villa confirmed the signing of Philippe Coutinho on Thursday evening after a £17million deal was negotiated with Barcelona.
When Coutinho joined Villa on loan from Barcelona in January, a £33m option to make it permanent was inserted into the contract. Villa have negotiated the price down and given Barcelona a 50 percent sell-on fee of any future transfer involving Coutinho.
Coutinho has also agreed to take a whopping 70 percent pay-cut to make the move to Villa Park. The deal was announced by chief executive Christian Purslow at Villa’s end of season awards dinner last night.
Coutinho’s switch to Villa Park concludes his four-and-a-half year stay at Barcelona, whom he joined from Liverpool for a staggering £142m in January 2018. The Brazilian wasn’t able to produce his best form at the Camp Nou and now joins Villa hoping to lead the club into Europe next season.
After his permanent move to Villa was confirmed, Coutinho posted a message of thanks to Barcelona on his Instagram page. He said: “Playing for Barcelona was a childhood dream, which I was able to fulfil. I am grateful for all the experience I had at the club and today I end this journey by thanking all the athletes, coaching staff, fans and other employees who were part of it all.”
Coutinho is set to be the first of several summer signings as head coach Steven Gerrard bids to turn Villa into European contenders. Gerrard hopes to sign a new centre-back, a defensive-minded midfielder and a left-back to provide competition to Lucas Digne. Villa are also looking to improve their forward options.