Arsenal have been linked with a move to sign Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona in recent windows, but Aston Villa have secured his loan signature.
The Gunners are believed to have been following him for some time, having failed to live up to the fee paid for him to sign from Liverpool in 2018.
We all remember how strong the Brazilian was for the Reds, and it would have been no surprise if Mikel Arteta had decided to bring him back to England, but are failings with Willian could well have left doubts in our minds, and that may well have opened the door for Villa to swoop in instead.
The Villains have agreed a loan deal until the end of the campaign where he will play under his former team-mate Steven Gerrard, who replaced Dean Smith in recent months.
We may well be looking to strengthen other areas of the team, with a striker and a central midfielder on our wish-list a present, but ultimately our wealth of in-form options on the wings and in behind the striker may well have hampered our efforts to land Coutinho.
I personally think Coutinho would have been an interesting addition, but his wage would likely have been excessive especially when you consider both Martin Odegaard, Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Emile Smith Rowe would likely hold onto their first-team roles ahead of him.
Do you believe Couts could have earned his way ahead of some of our impressive crop? Who do you think would be most at risk of losing minutes if we’d landed him?
Just Arsenal Show – Dan Smith on the reaction to Covid outbreak at Liverpool