Philippe Coutinho had been enjoying life back in the Premier League after joining Aston Villa on loan but has gone off the boil after a great start to life at Villa Park.
The Brazilian produced four goals and three assists in his first eight games with the Villans which drew plenty of praise from manager Steven Gerrard.
However, Coutinho’s has form has dipped since with no goals or assists in his last five outings and Villa are now seemingly getting cold feet about signing the Brazilian permanently
The Telegraph are reporting that the decision over whether to keep Coutinho has “gone from a no-brainer to a potential dilemma” mainly because of the huge numbers involved.
The report claims Coutinho “would cost Villa £33 million” and the club would also have to shell out “at least £8m a year” in wages even the Brazilian takes a pay cut.
It’s not that Villa can’t afford the numbers, but the report reckons the club could “could reasonably expect a higher level of consistency” from such an outlay and describe Coutinho as a “luxury player.”
The Brazilian does still have time to try and impress again at Villa before the end of the season with Gerrard’s side still having six games left to play.
However, the Premier League side “need to be sure Coutinho is the game-changing signing who can inspire them towards European qualification next season” if they are to try to and secure a permanent deal.