By Dan Carter

31st Aug, 2023 | 4:10pm

Two approaches made as Aston Villa now open to late Philippe Coutinho transfer - Fabrizio Romano

Aston Villa are open to letting Philippe Coutinho leave Villa Park, with both Besiktas and Real Betis interested in the Brazilian, according to Fabrizio Romano.

The transfer specialist reported via Twitter on Thursday (31 August) that both clubs had approached Unai Emery’s side to secure the playmaker before the end of the transfer window.

Villa are willing to allow Coutinho to depart this summer, should they receive a fee that they believe to be acceptable and there is a belief that negotiations between either club shouldn’t be a problem.

Coutinho had looked likely to depart Villa Park throughout the summer and had appeared set to move to Qatari side Al Duhail, with negations on personal terms advanced (Romano, 27 August), but a move to either Spain or Turkey appears to be much more likely between now and the 1 September deadline.

Not required

Although Coutinho is undoubtedly one of the most naturally talented players at the disposal of Emery at Villa Park, he has been anything but a reliable asset for the Spanish manager since his arrival. He seems to have run his course in the Premier League.

As one of the higher earners in the Villa side, the Brazilian should be contributing week-in-week-out as they continue their ascent up the Premier League, but Coutinho has struggled to remain fit consistently, let alone regularly contribute in front of goal.

With his contract at Aston Villa running until 2026, Emery’s side should pocket a reasonable transfer fee for the Brazilian while also shifting a huge wage off their bill and it could well allow them to dip into the transfer market again before the window closes.

Now that Nicolo Zaniolo has joined the ranks at the midlands club and the midfield at Villa Park has been performing so well with John McGinn in a more advanced role, Coutinho just doesn’t quite fit into the side anymore and it will be best for everyone if he moves on this summer.

In other Aston Villa news, one of Villa’s midfield shone in the win over Burnley showing why he must start every week