According to widespread media reports Aston Villa look like completing the transfer of Southampton left-back Matthew Targett, after being linked with the player for a few weeks now.
While Villa’s interest in the full back has been mentioned in the press for the past couple of weeks, it was also reported that Liverpool had eyes on the player, to act as understudy to Andy Robertson, since Alberto Moreno hadn’t been retained.
While Liverpool would no doubt be a very interesting destination for Targett, in the larger context of his career, at 23-year-old and with designs on playing for England, he needs to be a first team regular asap.
With Villa’s interest, it looks like Southampton, at least this time, will buck the trend of them being Liverpool’s feeder club.
Targett has currently been playing second fiddle at the Saints to Ryan Bertrand, so the move to Villa would no doubt be enticing to the player. He’d fancy himself to dislodge Neil Taylor, with Kortney Hause likely to be one of Villa’s centre-back options, only covering left-back in case of injuries.
We Meet Again
Villa fans will remember Targett lining up against them at Wembley for Fulham in the 2017/18 Championship play-off final. Targett’s loan spell at Fulham was one of the contributing reasons for the team’s impressive push at the later end of the season and their eventual play-off success.
Fulham couldn’t get Targett on a permanent the following season, much to the disappointment of some Fulham fans.
How much Villa are paying for Targett seems to have most of the media guessing with initial fees banned around between £8m and £17m.
The fees reported in the press about Southampton’s Matt Targett range from £8m to £17m.🤔 Considering the most he’s ever started for the Saints in a season is 13 games, you’d think it’s going to be the lower end of the various estimations, despite other club interest. #AVFC pic.twitter.com/CuwG4x8UZa— My Old Man Said (@oldmansaid) June 29, 2019
Considering Targett has functioned very much as a back-up full-back for the Saints, never starting more than 13 games in a season, it’s likely the upfront fee will be on the lower end of the media’s pricing spectrum, with their being substantial add-ons. £11M seems the likely price at this stage.
Completing the Defence
Targett would certainly mean Villa Head Coach Smith has his full-backs sorted out before pre-season begins, with his main concern now adding two centre-backs to the equation on top of Hause and James Chester.
Obviously, it’s hoped that Tyrone Mings will return to Villa on a permanent, while at the moment, Villa are also being linked to Bristol City’s Adam Webster, with the Robins looking to profit on the player they bought for £3.5m from Ipswich Town last season.
Ipswich would benefit from a 20% sell-on clause if Webster is sold, so Bristol City will no doubt play hardball on the transfer fee, although Villa aren’t expected to go too far past the £10m-12m mark.