Philippe Coutinho was a part of the 2019/20 Bayern Munich team that secured a historic treble after the season had been paused for two months due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. His season long loan spell in Munich finished with 11 goals and 9 assists to his name from a total of 38 appearances across all competitions en route to clinching the Bundesliga title, DFB-Pokal, and UEFA Champions League.
For Coutinho, the loan spell at Bayern came at a good time as he was going through a rough patch to the start of his tenure with Barcelona after joining them from Liverpool. Unfortunately, he did suffer an ankle injury towards the end of the 2019/20 season that kept him out of action for nine matches before the Champions League bubble resumed in August of 2020 in Portugal. At the time, his loan spell had been extended so that he could take part in the remaining Champions League knockout stage matches with Bayern, and ironically enough, he scored a brace and provided an assist in the historic 8-2 win over Barcelona in the quarter-finals match.
He’s currently away with the Brazilian national team, who have already clinched qualification to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, having been one of the first CONMEBOL nations to do so. In a written interview with Brazilian outlet Ge Globo, he commented on his time at Bayern. “A group with high quality, one of the best teams in history for many. For me, it was an honor and a reason to be proud to have been part of this group and of everything we have achieved,” he said of his time with the club.
Coutinho currently plays for Aston Villa in the English Premier League under manager Steven Gerrard, who he once played alongside at Liverpool. He believes he made the right decision to play under his former teammate and make the move to England. “I believe I have been adapting well to this return to English football. It’s a championship I know and I feel good playing. In addition, I was very well received by everyone and this has helped me a lot,” he explained.
Much like Hasan Salihamidzic and Hansi Flick had back in 2019, Coutinho said that positive discussions with Gerrard helped him decide to make the move to Villa. “We had a conversation that made me feel very comfortable and motivated. He talked about the Villa project, the goals, what he expected from me and it was something I was looking for too. I believe we made a good decision and things are going well,” he said.