Former Liverpool star Phillipe Coutinho has reportedly agreed a move to join Qatari side Al Duhail, further emphasising how his career has fell off since leaving Anfield.
Coutinho, 31, was once the star jewel of Liverpool’s side and was one of the league’s best attacking midfielders during his time at the club.
Of course, his £146m move to Barcelona ranks him in the top five most expensive transfers of all time and that signing, despite being a good career move on paper, was the start of a steep decline that no-one saw coming.
Now, according to Fabrizio Romano, he has agreed reached an agreement with Qatari side Al Duhail on personal terms, but there has still been no final green light from Villa.
It looks likely that Villa will allow him to leave, given he is now a squad player at best after making just two substitute appearances so far totalling 24 minutes in their opening two games.
He also played less than 1000 minutes in total last season, and he featured in the matchday squad just once from February onwards in the league last season.
Unai Emery has built a strong Villa side that qualified for Europe last season and they are looking to move forward as a club with younger, more dynamic players - like their club-record deal for Moussa Diaby this summer.
Coutinho played 201 times for Liverpool, scoring 54 times and assisting on 45 occasions, and he enjoyed a brilliant run of 20 goal contributions before making the move to Spain in the January window in the 2017/18 season.
The potential was there for Coutinho to thrive in Klopp’s side, but it wasn’t meant to be.
The Brazilian’s career went into freefall after leaving Liverpool for Barcelona. Coutinho was revered by Liverpool fans during his time at Anfield but left under a cloud for Catalonia.
Jurgen Klopp once famously said: “I told him stay here and they will end up building a statue in your honour. Go somewhere else, to Barcelona, to Bayern Munich, to Real Madrid, and you will be just another player. Here you can be something more.”
Now he is set to depart for the Middle East if an agreement can be made between the two clubs and Liverpool will always wonder what could have been.