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Coutinho determined to take Aston Villa into Europe after completing permanent move

Philippe Coutinho has challenged his Aston Villa team-mates to target a spot in Europe after completing a permanent £17 million move to the club.

The Aston Villa playmaker, 29, put pen to paper on a contract until 2026 on Thursday after impressing on loan.

Steven Gerrard’s side have failed to qualify for Europe next season but Coutinho has stated his desire to take the club back there for the first time since the 2010-11 campaign.

Coutinho told Aston Villa’s website: “We can do better than we did this year and we want to achieve things like getting into Europe. I believe so much in the squad and the work the staff is doing.

“I believe that’s where we have to be, playing in European games. That’s what we will work hard for.

“I feel happy in the club. It’s been a good start and I want to achieve good things with the club.

“I’m already looking forward to the next year. I believe so much in the squad and the club, and we can achieve good things next year.

“He (manager Steven Gerrard) believes in me. We’ve known each other for a long time and I felt very welcome from him and his staff when I arrived here.

“He’s a great manager, for sure. I’m happy to be managed by him and his staff. His ambitions are high and I believe in the same things he believes in. I want to work hard to achieve these things.”

Coutinho has scored four goals in 16 games since sealing a reunion with Gerrard at Aston Villa.

Gerrard’s side are next in action on Sunday when they host Crystal Palace.

(Photo: Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

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