Coutinho leaves Villa to join Qatari side Al-Duhail on loan
Philippe Coutinho has left Aston Villa to join Qatari side Al-Duhail on a season-long loan.
The Brazilian, 31, was brought to Villa Park by former boss Steven Gerrard in January 2022, with his initial short-term deal from Barcelona made permanent the following summer.
But despite a bright start to his Premier League return, the former Liverpool playmaker has failed to live up to expectations after struggling with form and injuries.
Coutinho made just seven league starts for Villa last season, scoring only once, while he suffered another hamstring injury shortly after being introduced against Everton last month.
After a difficult period since his £142million move to the Camp Nou from Liverpool in 2018, he will now look to rebuild his career in the Middle East.
The 68-cap international still has three years remaining on the four-year contract he signed at Villa last summer.
Coutinho will now link up with Al-Duhail boss Hernan Crespo, who guided the side to Qatar Stars League glory last term.
The Doha-based outfit have begun their title defence unbeaten after three games, trailing early leaders Al-Rayyan by two points.
Before offloading his South American attacker, Emery said: "Philippe is a very good person and always we have to respect him as a person.
"As a player, he has played at a very high level. He has not been consistent because of injuries and we decided with him speaking and agreeing with him to try that if something is good for him and good for the club, and for the squad, we can let him leave.
"Then he can find his good performance as a player."