Philippe Coutinho: Remembering Aston Villa’s attempt to sign Barcelona’s new signing | Football | Sport


Liverpool beat off competition from Southampton in the January transfer window of 2013 to sign Coutinho from Inter Milan for £8.5million. 

Coutinho had worked with then Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino during a loan spell with Espanyol in 2012 but he leapt at the opportunity to move to Anfield.

However, they were not the first Premier League club to make a play for his signature. 

The Brazilian had failed to establish himself at the San Siro following since his move from Vasco da Gama in 2008. 

He was on the fringes of Inter’s first team by the midway point of the 2012/13 campaign. 

A move away looked certain and it was who sprung into action in a bid to bring him to England.

Then Villa boss Paul Lambert was desperate to sign Coutinho to bolster his struggling side. 

Coutinho’s agent Cacau Barbosa revealed an approach from the Villans for the midfielder’s services. 

“I can confirm Aston Villa made an enquiry for Coutinho,” he said on January 10, 2013.  

“They want him, but with all due respect for the proposal made to Philippe, at this moment there is still nothing concrete to suggest an exit from Inter.”

16 days later Coutinho had sealed a permanent move to , where he quickly established himself as one of the Premier League’s hottest talents. 

Villa finished the 2012/13 season in 15th place in the Premier League table, just five points above the relegation zone. 

They continued to flirt with the drop in the following two campaign before falling into the Championship on 2016. 

Coutinho scored 54 goals in 202 appearances for Liverpool before completing his move to

The Catalans have paid an initial £106m fee for his services, which could rise to £142m. 

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