Philippe Coutinho has wasted no time at all in announcing his return to the Premier League.
Having wriggled free from his Barcelona nightmare with an Aston Villa loan move in January, the Brazilian has made it his mission to remind the world why he is one of the most expensive players in history.
Coutinho scores and provides two assists
With Marcelo Biesla’s men having taken the lead through Daniel James in the first-half, Coutinho put his foot down and provided a superb goal and two assists to completely flip the game on its head.
The former Liverpool wizard fired the Villans level with a measured finish past Illan Meslier and into the bottom corner after a beautiful first touch from Matty Cash’s pass.
However, perhaps the finest contribution of Coutinho’s whirlwind half was the moment that he turned provider for Jacob Ramsey by playing a brilliantly-weighted through ball that cut Leeds’ defence in half.
But not satisfied with that, he decided that one assist for Ramsey wasn’t enough as the Brazil international once again paved the way for Villa’s young star to score with another cute pass.
It was at that exact moment when we realised that Coutinho was playing fantasy football, so be sure to do yourself a favour and check out his astonishing first-half blitz down below:
Coutinho scores classy goal
One touch… BANG! 💥— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) February 9, 2022
Philippe Coutinho is settling in very nicely at Aston Villa.
He took that goal brilliantly! 💫 pic.twitter.com/0MsFJQ8aMu
Coutinho turns provider for Ramsey
💜 McGinn x Coutinho x Ramsey 💜— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) February 9, 2022
Tremendous vision to create the opportunity and the finish to match.
Three of Aston Villa's finest combine for a wonderful goal! pic.twitter.com/ZXQ7GTGoKh
Coutinho tees up Ramsey yet again
Coutinho is back. Big time.
A Premier League thriller
The funny thing is that Coutinho’s first-half masterclass was only the tip of the iceberg in what proved to be a chaotic 45 minutes with Leeds ensuring that the game didn’t completely slip away from them.
In fact, the match’s status as one of the most entertaining affairs of the 2021/22 season so far was assured when James bagged his second in stoppage time with a close-range header past Emiliano Martinez.
However, despite James’ own undeniably impressive output, the story of the 45 minutes was Coutinho channeling the sort of performance that you’d expect from Steven Gerrard himself in his prime.
And while you might think that sounds hyperbolic, anybody delivering three goal contributions of that quality in just one half of Premier League football is deserving of the highest praise.
So, sure, the signs of Coutinho’s revival in his second spell away from Barca were identifiable as early as the United comeback, but it was his 45-minute destruction of Leeds that truly announced it to the world.
What a signing this could turn out to be for the Villans. Incredible stuff.