BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - Tuesday, May 10, 2022: Aston Villa's Philippe Coutinho Correia during the FA Premier League match between Aston Villa FC and Liverpool FC at Villa Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Coutinho to miss Liverpool reunion but Aston Villa get injury boost

Philippe Coutinho will be absent as Aston Villa make the trip to his former club Liverpool on Saturday, but Unai Emery has positive news elsewhere.

Villa are the final side to head to Anfield this season, with Liverpool looking for an eighth straight win as Jurgen Klopp‘s side bid for top four.

The Midlands outfit arrive on a strong run of form, as despite recent 1-0 defeats to Man United and Wolves they have, in fact, only lost twice in their last 13.

There have been nine victories in that run, and following Brighton‘s slip-up at Newcastle on Thursday night they still harbour hopes of a sixth-placed finish.

Emery will be buoyed, then, by the news of just two injuries in his first-team squad: Coutinho and third-choice goalkeeper Jed Steer.

Coutinho has not featured since scoring his only goal of the season in a 4-2 loss to Arsenal in February, only making the bench once in that time.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Thursday, November 10, 2022: Aston Villa's manager Unai Emery during the Football League Cup 3rd Round match between Manchester United FC and Aston Villa FC at Old Trafford. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

While he was in the squad for the loss to Wolves on May 6, he then missed the 2-1 win over Tottenham a week later – and Emery has now confirmed his season is over.

“I talked with him this week; he’s a little bit unlucky with his month because I didn’t see him play matches like I want,” the Manager of the Season contender said.

“But, of course, with the injuries coming, we have to be patient as well, now we are going to wait for his recovery.

“This year, he’s not going to play again until the end of this season because we are finishing in two weeks.”

It remains to be seen whether Coutinho will still travel to Merseyside, with it being his close friend Roberto Firmino‘s Anfield farewell.

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - Monday, December 26, 2022: Liverpool's captain Jordan Henderson leads his side out before the FA Premier League match between Aston Villa FC and Liverpool FC at Villa Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

In his pre-match press conference on Thursday, Emery confirmed that defender Calum Chambers would be available after illness.

That makes the entire squad fit and present, bar Coutinho and Steer, with Villa in strong health during the season’s run-in.

Possible Aston Villa XI: Martinez; Young, Konsa, Mings, Moreno; Dendoncker, Luiz; McGinn, Buendia, Ramsey; Watkins