Thu. May 19th, 2022

Steven Gerrard says he can understand why so many clubs are after “special” Philippe Coutinho, but would not be drawn on Aston Villa’s interest.

Villa are one of six English clubs in the race to sign the Barcelona midfielder, with Coutinho keen to return to the Premier League and expected to make a decision on his future before this weekend.

Gerrard, who regards Coutinho as a friend after their time together at Liverpool, did not want to add to speculation, but was full of praise for the 29-year-old at Thursday’s news conference.

I can understand why a lot of supporters up and down the country are speaking about him. I don’t think you get a nickname as a magician if you’re not a special footballer, so he’s someone I have an incredible amount of respect for.

“But I don’t want to add to any speculation, because he belongs to Barcelona.”

The former Liverpool player wants to return to England and sign for an ambitious club where he can play regularly.

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