Smith given ‘£100m transfer budget’
Aston Villa will back Dean Smith with a £100m transfer kitty to improve his squad this summer, according to reports.
Villa are preparing for their second season back in the Premier League after staying up by a point thanks to a 1-1 draw against West Ham United on the final day of fixtures.
The club appointed Johan Lange as their new sporting director earlier this week after the departure of Jesus Garcia Pitarch, who had overseen last summer’s spending spree.
Villa want to bring in far fewer players than last year, when 12 new recruits arrived at B6 after promotion from the Championship. According to the Sunday Mirror, Villa have a budget of £100m with four key signings being targeted.
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McCarthy a ‘£5m target’
Crystal Palace midfielder James McCarthy has been touted with a £5m switch to Aston Villa in the national press.
The Daily Mail cite Villa with big interest in the 29-year-old who, last season, made 33 appearances for Roy Hodgson’s side.
The report suggests Villa will relax their transfer policy on only buying players under the age of 28, with Dean Smith now keen to add Premier League experience right through his side’s spine.
McCarthy has less than two years to run on his current deal at Selhurst Park and has fully recovered from a serious double leg fracture sustained while playing for Everton in 2018.
Villa tipped to sign Origi from Liverpool
Villa have been linked with a move for Liverpool striker Divock Origi.
According to The Sun, Villa are mulling over a move for the Belgian international.
Origi has become a hero at Anfield thanks to his penchant for scoring in big games at decisive moments, but he has been unable to dislodge Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane or Roberto Firmino in Jurgen Klopp’s fabled front three at the Reds.
With one eye on next summer’s European Championships, Origi might think he needs regular first team football to get into a Belgium side brimming with talent up front.
Leeds join Benrahma race
Leeds United are keen on in-demand winger Said Benrahma, according to reports.
The 24-year-old is believed to be a target for a number of Premier League clubs having enjoyed an outstanding season in the Championship.
He is thought to be on the club’s radar again this summer with Villa preparing for another season in the top-flight.
The Villa outcasts facing the axe
We’ve heard a lot about possible incomings, but what about outgoings? Villa’s current squad list stands at 27 which includes four goalkeepers.
Here, we attempt to run the rule over nine members of Villa’s contracted first-team who could be shown the exit door ahead of the transfer window closing on October 5.