Philippe Coutinho speaks out on Aston Villa transfer as he reveals 'anxiety'

Philippe Coutinho of Aston Villa
-Credit: (Image: Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images)

Speaking for the first time since leaving Aston Villa on loan again, Philippe Coutinho has expressed his joy to return home to Brazil.

On Wednesday the club announced the 32-year-old's departure, again on a one-year basis but this time to Vasco da Gama, the club that nurtured Coutinho in his formative years. This saga has dragged on since the season's end as the terms of the deal reportedly changed between a permanent and temporary deal, but now the matter has been fully settled.

It is his second loan exit since Unai Emery arrived at Villa, as under the boss he suffered injury woes and was unable to match the desired intensity for the first-team. Last year he switched to Qatari club Al-Duhail, but now able to bask in familiar surroundings it is an overwhelming sense of joy for the midfielder.

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"It’s a feeling of great happiness, joy and anxiety," he told his boyhood club. "I lived abroad for a long time, so it really is a feeling of coming home, to the place where I grew up, to the place I love, the club I love. Everyone, my family, knows how happy I am and they are all happy about this return."

On the Brazilian end of the announcement, Vasco exclaimed: "The good son returns home!"

It is 14 years since Coutinho left his homeland to forge a career in Europe, where he has made almost 500 senior appearances and contributed 194 goals and won 10 major titles. He will wear the No.11 jersey upon his return - the first time he has worn that number for any of his nine historical clubs and a switch from the No.30 he was handed in his youth days by Vasco.

Villa had hoped to offload the £17m signing permanently this summer, but instead will see him return next summer when there will be only one year remaining on his contract.

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