Aston Villa: Gerrard could 'pull the plug' on £33m signing at Villa Park

Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard

Aston Villa could “pull the plug” on signing Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona this summer, according to transfer insider Dean Jones.

The Midlands club can sign the loanee permanently for £33m, but Jones thinks they will not take up their option to buy if the Brazilian’s form does not improve.

What is the latest news involving Coutinho?

As per Birmingham Live, Villa are able to buy Coutinho for £33m at the end of his loan spell. He joined on a temporary deal from Barcelona back in January and made an immediate impact at Villa Park.

The 29-year-old scored on his debut against Manchester United before following that up with goals against Leeds United and Southampton.

In his first 10 games, Coutinho managed to come up with seven goal contributions in total, which is an impressive return.

Since then, though, things have dried up, with the attacking midfielder failing to score or assist in April.

That, however, does not seem to have deterred Newcastle United, who are now reportedly interested in signing him.

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What has Jones said about Coutinho and Villa?

Jones can see Steven Gerrard and Villa backing away from a permanent deal for Coutinho if his performances do not improve.

Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, the football journalist said: “I think in the next four weeks, Coutinho needs to weigh in with some big performances on a personal level that convince Aston Villa that he’s absolutely worth signing.

“If he doesn’t between now and the end of the season, I think they might hesitate and pull the plug.”

Should Villa pull the plug on Coutinho?

No. It is true, his performances in recent weeks have not been what Villa fans have come to expect, especially after his first few displays in claret and blue.

However, Coutinho has shown at Villa and down the years that he is a player with a lot of quality. When you consider that, the Brazil international is quite clearly just in a bad run of form and not a poor attacker who is not good enough to play for Gerrard’s side.

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And in his defence, the team as a whole has struggled of late, with their recent results something Gerrard will not be happy about. For the Premier League outfit, there is not much to play for, so their season has fizzled out a bit.

Next term, things could be different, but only if they sign players who will improve their squad, and it is has hard to argue that buying Coutinho would not do that.

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