Aston Villa contacted Philippe Coutinho on a loan deal

Aston Villa want to sign Philippe Coutinho on loan from Barcelona and have contacted the Brazilian’s agent with a view to negotiating a deal.

Coutinho is ready to leave Camp Nou and Villa are understood to be one of three Premier League suitors.

The 29-year-old joined Barcelona from Liverpool for an initial £106m in January 2018 but the move has not worked out and he spent the 2019-20 season on loan at Bayern Munich.

Coutinho, who can operate as a wide player or attacking midfielder, has started only five games this season, the most recent of those a month ago. He tested positive for Covid last week but was said by Barcelona to be in good health.

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