There’s been a lot of speculation on the subject of Keinan Davis’s medium to long-term future at Aston Villa.
There’s been reports of top-six Premier League scouts monitoring his Villa progress, and most recently, reports of a £5m bid for the striker from Manchester United, which was dismissed to be “utter rubbish” by Villa CEO Keith Wyness.
Davis’s rise this season was very much unexpected by Villa, after he got a chance in the first team after various first team striker injuries at the beginning of the season. His performance against Norwich at Villa Park was probably an eye-opener for even the Villa management team.
The key to the recent noise about Davis is the new two-year contract he signed back in December 2016.
At that time it would have been the standard kind of two-year ‘lets see how things progress’ development deal, that Callum O’Hare signed last week. An improvement in wages, after breaking into the first team squad, but nowhere near the average wages of Villa’s first team players.
With Davis’s sudden transition into a regular in the first team, the player will feel he has already outgrown his new contract, so no doubt his agent has been pushing for improved terms.
There’s been whispers that team Davis are at logger heads with the club in terms of any new deal. Now the oldest trick in the book in negotiating wages, is for an agent to get stories in the newspapers about interest in their player from other clubs.
If true in this situation, then Davis’s agent hasn’t messed around.
Look at the reality though. In the case of Manchester United, for example, considering their current forward options and recent spend in that position, it’s not very likely Davis would have a future at Old Trafford any time soon.
After Stevenage sold the youngster to Biggleswade Town, he wasn’t even thought of good enough to be a pro footballer.
There was still doubts when Villa bought him at the end of 2015, as no sell-on clause was included in the deal. The fee reported to be just £5000 – plus the gate receipts from one of Villa’s Under-23 fixtures.
So, in the worst case scenario, at least if Davis is ever sold, they’ll be no chunk of the transfer fee lining any other team’s pockets.
At the moment though, I wouldn’t expect Davis to move anywhere, although Villa locking him down on a new contract will grow as a concern in the second half of this season.