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Newcastle 'exploring' prospect of nicking Coutinho away from Aston Villa

Newcastle are ready to outbid Aston Villa for their on-loan midfield star Philippe Coutinho.

Sport says the Magpies have already started to explore a deal for the Brazilian through intermediaries with a significant bonus heading in the direction of Coutinho were he to choose Newcastle.

Coutinho has been a revelation since swapping Barcelona for Aston Villa on loan in January, scoring four goals and adding three assists in 10 matches so far.

A permanent switch to Villa Park is reportedly Barcelona's 'priority', with a deal mooted to be around £33.5m - but Newcastle's reported interest could complicate any switch to the Midlands.

Cash-strapped Barcelona 'are not willing to accept discounts from Villa' should better offers come in from elsewhere.

Arsenal have also been credited with interest in the former Liverpool playmaker.


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