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Aston Villa in £30 million midfielder pursuit

Despite selling talisman Jack Grealish to Manchester City for £100 million, Aston Villa fans can be happy about their club’s transfer business this summer.

Following a loan deal for defender Axel Tuanzebe from Manchester United and a free transfer for former player Ashley Young, they have since spent over £95 million on midfielder Emiliano Buendia, striker Danny Ings and winger Leon Bailey.

Despite this recruitment, Dean Smith’s side lost their first game of the new season against newly-promoted Watford, though gave a good account of themselves and it seems that the manager has identified other areas where he can strengthen.

Aston Villa in £30 million midfielder pursuit

In addition to the quintet that they have already signed, 19-year-old striker Caleb Chukwuemeka slipped through the door while the squad were recovering from their first game of the season, for £300,000, though Villa are not done there.

The latest news is that representatives from the football club will meet with Metz president Bernard Serin to discuss the transfer of 18-year-old hotshot midfielder Pape Matar Sarr, who is understood to be valued at £30 million.

Villa though, are not the only Premier League club who are believed to be tracking the Senagalese player, who caught the eye last term in Ligue 1, with Chelsea also thought to have expressed serious intent. Sarr scored three goals in 22 appearances for Metz during the 2020/21 campaign, in a team that finished 10th – exactly in mid-table.

 

What can Sarr offer Villa?

While it may take a while for the player to settle in at Villa Park, there is no doubt that the player has a lot of potential – reflected by the proposed fee. He certainly has the raw ability to become a star at the West Midlands club and operates chiefly as an advanced playmaker who has an eye for a pass.

The thought of the player linking up with summer signings Buendia and Bailey should for Villa fans arouse excitement, because when the trio gel, the team has the ability to cause opponents a lot of problems.

Especially when considering they also have either Danny Ings and Ollie Watkins to choose from up front.

 

Any other business for Villa?

Even if Sarr does sign, Villa could still bring at least another player in before the transfer window closes and it has been suggested that the club could sign Manchester United’s Jesse Lingard in a £20 million deal after the Red Devils reportedly lowered his asking price.

They would likely face competition from West Ham United for his signature, where the player excelled on loan during the second half of last season, while the club are also rumoured to be considering returning to Norwich City and making a move for creative midfielder Todd Cantwell, who would also likely cost in the region of £30 million.

Meanwhile, ambitious owner Johan Lange is also understood to have eyes on Southampton’s James Ward Prowse and Burnely’s Dwight McNeil.