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Gerrard admits Aston Villa need Arsenal target Coutinho to want to stay

Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard is counting on Philippe Coutinho choosing to stay at Villa Park.

On-loan from Barcelona, Coutinho's form is also attracting interest from Arsenal.

Coutinho would be a great start to a key window for Gerrard ahead of an anticipated push for a return to European football next season.

"I think you all know what my decision would be," Gerrard said. "I think you all know what I think of him but this is not as straightforward as people think.

"There is obviously an option in place, Barcelona still own the player.

"Phil has got to obviously want to be here in terms of the big picture but he is enjoying his football and looks happy and settled.

"I know the owners are very ambitious, so we will just analyse it as we go along.

"But if it was totally on me and it was my cash you know what I would do."

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