Aston Villa could 'bring in Champions League player' to partner Coutinho

It would be a “real bonus” if Aston Villa can sign a Champions League-level forward on top of Philippe Coutinho this summer, claims journalist Pete O’Rourke, who can see them moving for one.

The 29-year-old could be in line for a permanent switch, while it would not be a surprise to see manager Steven Gerrard bring in a new striker after warning his players that they are fighting for their futures at Villa Park.

What is the latest news involving Villa?

Following Villa’s recent 2-1 loss to rivals Wolves, Gerrard made it clear that he would not hesitate to make changes to his squad in the summer if things do not improve.

“At the moment, we’re looking like a 45-minute team, and that’s on me,” the Villans boss told The Independent and other outlets after the game.

“I’ve got to fix it, and I will fix it. The players in the building have to help me fix it now, if not we will get players in who will help me fix it.”

One player Gerrard will undoubtedly be looking to keep hold of, however, is Coutinho. The Brazilian, who once cost £142m after joining Barcelona from Liverpool, has thoroughly impressed at Villa Park since arriving on loan in January.

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In 11 league appearances, Coutinho has come up with seven goal contributions, so it would be not a shock if the Villans took up their £33m buy option.

What has O’Rourke said about Villa?

O’Rourke thinks Villa could sign a new centre-forward on top of Coutinho after a season where they have not been clinical enough in his eyes.

Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, the transfer insider said: “That’s probably been the issue for Villa so far since Gerrard’s arrival, not been clinical enough, maybe not scored enough goals.

“But they could bring in a Champions League player [up front] and keep Philippe Coutinho, and if he’s providing the ammunition for them, it’d be a real bonus for Aston Villa.”

Who could Villa sign?

If Gerrard wants an upgrade on Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings, one striker he is likely to turn to is former Liverpool team-mate Luis Suarez.

The 35-year-old is out of contract in the summer and, according to The Athletic’s Gregg Evans, Gerrard will monitor his situation once the transfer window is open.

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Suarez has been in and out of Atletico Madrid’s team this season, but the Uruguay international has still managed to reach double figures in La Liga so clearly has life left in him.

He undoubtedly meets the Champions League-level criteria, so if that is what Gerrard is looking for this summer, then bringing in the former Barcelona and Liverpool forward is a no-brainer.

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