Philippe Coutinho’s new club confirmed as former £145m star leaves Europe for another season-long loan away from Aston Villa
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Philippe Coutinho’s new club confirmed as former £145m star leaves Europe for another season-long loan away from Aston Villa

  • The former Liverpool superstar joined Barcelona for a staggering £145million in 2018
  • The Brazilian has struggled to find a long-term home since leaving the Camp Nou
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Philippe Coutinho has returned to his boyhood club in Rio de Janeiro on a season-long loan from Aston Villa.

The former Liverpool superstar, who joined from Barcelona for a staggering £145million in 2018, has struggled to find a long-term home since leaving the Camp Nou, first joining Bayern Munich and Aston Villa on loan before signing for the Premier League side in 2022.

The 32-year-old Brazilian temporarily left Villa Park last season on a season-long loan to Saudi Arabian side Al-Duhail but managed just three goals in 16 appearances.

Today, Coutinho has chosen to return to his roots by signing for his boyhood club, Vasco da Gama, in Rio.

“It’s a feeling of great happiness, joy and anxiety,” said the winger on his return to the club. “I lived abroad for a long time, so it’s really a feeling of coming home, to the place where I grew up, to the place I love, to the club I love.

Philippe Coutinho returns to his boyhood club Vasco da Gama on a season-long loan
The Brazilian, 32, has left Aston Villa on loan again after playing in Saudi Arabia last season

“Everyone, my family, knows how happy I am and they are all happy about this return.”

Coutinho came through Vasco da Gama’s youth academy before being spotted by Serie A giants Inter Milan in 2008.

He impressed at the San Siro as a youngster before signing for Liverpool in 2013, where he spent another five years before moving to Barcelona in one of the most expensive transfers of all time.

During his time at Anfield, Coutinho made 152 appearances for the Reds and scored 41 goals.

His sale fee allowed Liverpool to sign a handful of key players under Jurgen Klopp, including Virgil van Dijk and Alisson Becker.

Former Liverpool star Coutinho signed for Barcelona in a deal worth £145million in 2018

Vasco da Gama, who sit 13th in the Brazilian top-flight after 15 games, will hope Coutinho can quickly link up with former West Ham and Marseille star Dimitri Payet, 37, who joined the club in 2023.

Payet has struggled with hamstring injuries so far this season, starting just four of Vasco da Gama’s league games since April.