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Aston Villa agree Philippe Coutinho deal well below initial asking price

Philippe Coutinho will likely start against Leeds

Aston Villa have reached an agreement with Barcelona to make the loan move for Philippe Coutinho a permanent one this summer for well below the reported initial asking price.

The Brazilian joined Steven Gerrard at Aston Villa in January, and has proved an instant hit on his return to the Premier League. Now 29 years old, and off the back of a slender few years outside of England, the diminutive playmaker has racked up four goals and three assists in 14 top flight outings since making the midlands move.

And, inserted into the deal was believed to be an option to purchase the player, which was thought to stand at 40m euros should Gerrard and co. wish to do so. However, as per reports in Spain, a permanent deal is now expected to be struck for less than half of that.

This will be music to the ears of Aston Villa fans, who have enjoyed the moments of magic brought to them by the former Liverpool man, and who will likely continue to reap the rewards of Gerrard’s contacts in the transfer market.

What next for Watkins?

One man whose future is less clear is Villa striker Ollie Watkins, who has caught the eye of West Ham and Arsenal this year.

And, as per the Guardian, it is West Ham who are currently chasing the former-Brentford man most diligently, with rumours of a move worth up to £50m in the pipeline.

David Moyes’ side certainly have that money to spend, having seen a similar-sized bid for Darwin Nunez rejected in the dying embers of the January transfer window. However, whether they would be willing to part with it in order to secure Ollie Watkins rather than the Uruguayan is another matter,

Read more:

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This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 AFC Bournemouth 0 0 0
2 Arsenal FC 0 0 0
3 Aston Villa 0 0 0
4 Brentford FC 0 0 0
5 Brighton & Hove Albion 0 0 0
6 Chelsea FC 0 0 0
7 Crystal Palace 0 0 0
8 Everton FC 0 0 0
9 Fulham FC 0 0 0
10 Leeds United 0 0 0
11 Leicester City 0 0 0
12 Liverpool FC 0 0 0
13 Manchester City 0 0 0
14 Manchester United 0 0 0
15 Newcastle United 0 0 0
16 Nottingham Forest 0 0 0
17 Southampton FC 0 0 0
18 Tottenham Hotspur 0 0 0
19 West Ham United 0 0 0
20 Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 0 0

Premier League 21/22

Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 23
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 23
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 18
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur 17
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 16
De Bruyne, Kevin Manchester City 15
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 15
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 15
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace 14
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 13
Bowen, Jarrod West Ham United 12
Maddison, James Leicester City 12
Toney, Ivan Brentford FC 12
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 11
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 11
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 11
Richarlison Everton FC 11
Pukki, Teemu Norwich City 11
Raphinha Leeds United 11
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa 11