Aston Villa Late Transfer WIndow Striker Target
In Dean Smith’s latest press conference previewing the upcoming Fulham game, the Aston Villa Head Coach openly admitted that they were looking for a forward, before the transfer window closed.
“We are always looking; we are probably one short in the squad at the moment. With Ally going, we are looking at the forward line, but also midfield,” said Smith.
The very fact that he’d openly admit it and was willing to sell Ally Samatta, suggests that Villa certainly have a target in mind, and discussions are seemingly at a relatively advance stage.
Once Bitten, Twice Shy
It’s would be reckless to start the season without any out-and-out striker depth beyond Ollie Watkins and Keinan Davis, the club already made that mistake last season, when they were solely relying on Premier League novice, Wesley.
Many supporters questioned the wisdom at the time, although it was clear Villa were trying to get someone in at the right price (Neal Maupay), Smith presented a brave public face when he claimed to be happy with what he had at the time.
He’s been a bit more open with his intentions this time round, highlighting the need for a striker during the transfer window’s final week.
While Smith mentioned Bertrand Traore’s ability to also play down the middle, you’d ideally want to keep him out wide. Even if you include the new Villa acquisition, Villa’s three strikers don’t even have 10 Premier League games between them. It’s a concern.
The bottom line is, if Villa lost Watkins to an injury, the frontline options wouldn’t look too threatening and it could seriously compromise the season.
The question is who will come in though?
The Loan Option
Wesley will more than likely be out until the new year, so there is the option of taking a loan covering the Brazilian’s absence. After the money spent on both Watkins and Wesley, Villa are unlikely to spend big again on a striker.
MOMS has already discussed this in terms of Liverpool’s Ryan Brewster. It would make more sense for Villa to loan the 20-year-old for this season, rather than sign him for the reported £20m to £25m fee, and then have the prospect of a possible buy-back clause in the deal.
The likes of Crystal Palace and Sheffield United are allegedly looking at a permanent move for Brewster, but a loan deal to Villa, may suit Liverpool more.
While Villa are unlikely to drop big money on an outright buy of Brewster, the same can be said of Celtic’s Odsonne Edouard. If he left Celtic, it would probably be a deadline day job, but probably not for Villa, considering what the fee would be. There’s reportedly a bunch of clubs monitoring his situation, including the likes of Arsenal and Everton.
Beyond that, there’s been several red herrings out there – from Daniel Sturidge to Teemu Pukki – being used by the local press and click baiters to create ‘stories’, rather than legitimate leads and Villa options.
While in MOMS book, a Brewster loan deal fits the profile of the type of move that makes sense factoring in the money side of things and current personnel, it wouldn’t be a surprise, if a player comes in that hasn’t been on the media radar up to now.
Whoever it is, if he improves the bench and provides a legitimate option for Smith, then Villa’s squad for the 2020/21 season offers up a real chance for fast-tracked improvement from the last campaign.