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Dion Dublin says Steven Gerrard needs to add ‘five new players’ to the Aston Villa squad

Dion Dublin says Steven Gerrard needs to add ‘FIVE new players’ to the Aston Villa squad to challenge for a European place – and insists he must ‘keep hold of Philippe Coutinho’

  • Dion Dublin says that Steven Gerrard needs time to build his Aston Villa squad 
  • Aston Villa were beat 2-1 by Liverpool on Tuesday evening taking the early lead 
  • Dublin says that Gerrard must keep hold of Philippe Coutinho in the meantime
  • The 29-year-old attacking midfield star is on loan at the Premier League club
  •  Their agreement with the Spanish club had an option to buy set for a £33million
  • It is understood they’ve made an initial offer of around £12m; no fee is agreed yet

Dion Dublin says Steven Gerrard needs time to build his Aston Villa squad but admits the former Liverpool captain must keep hold of Philippe Coutinho in the meantime. 

Aston Villa were beaten 2-1 by Liverpool on Tuesday evening despite taking an early lead through Douglas Luiz. 

Dublin says Villa must strengthen their midfield and add three to five new players to be in with a chance of challenging for a European spot. 

Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa lost 2-1 at home to Liverpool on Tuesday despite taking the lead

Luiz opening the scoring for Aston Villa early on but Joel Matip managed to claw one back for the visitors just three minutes later. 

However, it was Mane who provided Liverpool with the winner in the 65th minute to crush Aston Villa’s hopes of beating against the title contenders. 

Speaking on Sky Sports after the game Dublin said: ‘I think Steven Gerrard needs a couple of transfer windows (to build his Aston Villa squad).

The former Aston Villa player went on to add: ‘Keeping Philippe Coutinho is a must I think.

Former player Dion Dublin says that manager needs time to build his Aston Villa squad

Former player Dion Dublin says that manager needs time to build his Aston Villa squad

However, he says that Gerrard must keep hold of Philippe Coutinho (middle) in the meantime

However, he says that Gerrard must keep hold of Philippe Coutinho (middle) in the meantime

‘Centre halves need to be better, full backs are good. 3,4,5 more players in and you can start to challenge for those Europa places, which is where Villa need to be.’

Gerrard has already made it clear that he would like to sign Coutinho a permanent deal after his impressive spell on loan from Barcelona. 

The midfielder has scored four goals and registered three assists in the league since his January move. 

Aston Villa’s initial agreement with the Spanish club had an option to buy at the end of the season, set for £33million.

Gerrard has already made it clear that he would like to sign Coutinho a permanent deal

Gerrard has already made it clear that he would like to sign Coutinho a permanent deal

Barca boss Xavi may accept less than £33m to move Coutinho's sizeable salary off their books

Barca boss Xavi may accept less than £33m to move Coutinho’s sizeable salary off their books

However, Aston Villa are confident of agreeing a cut-price deal for the attacking midfielder after opening talks with the LaLiga side.

Villa are understood to have made an initial offer of around £12million – but no fee is agreed yet and talks between the clubs are ongoing. 

Additionally, reports in Spain have suggested that Barcelona might be willing to do business for as little as £12.9m. 

The LaLiga side are said to be willing to take a hit to move the Brazilian’s sizeable salary off their books as they continue to struggle financially. 

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk