Aston Villa could spring a surprise move for former Real Madrid player James Rodriguez in the summer according to sources.
According to the report, the Colombian isn’t interested in staying at his current club Al-Rayyan and wants to make a move back to Europe.
The player’s current market value is £13.5m, and whoever is successful in securing the 30-year-old’s signature will surely manage to grab a bargain.
Gerrard pulled off a masterstroke during the January transfer window in persuading Coutinho to join Villa on loan until the summer.
The 29-year-old has suitably impressed so far, with four goals and three assists helping him to post the squad’s second-highest WhoScored rating for the season. In an ideal world, Villa would love to keep him at the club permanently, but this might not be possible due to the money that Barcelona want for him.
The Midlands side could sign the Brazilian for £33m in the summer, but this is more than they want to pay. By contrast, the price to lure Rodriguez to Villa Park would reportedly be “extremely low”, so he could be a more viable option than Coutinho.
Following Rodriguez’s World Cup heroics in 2014, David Beckham lavished him as “magical”, and when the 30-year-old is in the mood, there aren’t many finer players to watch in football.
Gerrard may have some work to do to get this prospective move over the line, but if a permanent Coutinho deal doesn’t work out, there appears to be a ready-made and more affordable replacement waiting in the wings.