With the sale of Fabian Delph to Manchester City and Christian Benteke's upcoming move to Liverpool FC, Aston Villa are rolling in a spare bit of cash. Though, it's needless to say there is two gaping wounds to patch up ahead of the 15/16 Premier League Season. Ahead of that, as famous YouTuber 'Pewdiepie' has said: 'Lets talk about money.'
But let us not talk about money in an overly serious sense. Yes, Villa and other European football teams are under strict scrutiny as a result of FFP, but my colleague Alex has covered that in an excellent article about just how much Villa can really spend in the real world.
So say that Villa can actually spend £35 million; who do they buy? Well, if you're listening Tom Fox, I've got two ready made replacements.
WILL HUGHES - DERBY COUNTY FC
I've been an admirer of Will Hughes for a long time and he's given me no reason to stop. You've heard it one thousand times already, but this kid has it all. As you'll see from the obnoxious YouTube video above, he's got a bit of Delph about him. In fact, I'll go as far to say that if you cloned Delph with Joe Cole in some mad-cap Cronenburg-esque experiment you'd get Will Hughes (somehow).
He's got the swashbuckling dynamism that Villa will be needing in the absence of Delph and Cleverley, but it also looks like he can change a game's tempo to whatever he wishes. From what I've seen from him in person and online, Will Hughes seems to move in a different dimension to the other 21 players on the pitch. At 20 years old, Will has already played 121 matches for Derby and that's a fair bit of footballing experience for anyone that age.
At any rate, if Villa can splurge on this guy - they've made good business, he'll be off to Manchester City for £30 million in five years and that's double what I'd be spending on him now.
CHARLIE AUSTIN - QUEENS PARK RANGERS
The story of Charlie Austin is incredible. Working as a bricklayer during his time at semi-pro Poole Town, he banged in 46 goals in 46 games and managed to get snapped up by Swindon. At Swindon, he proved he was no flash-in-the-pan and his stratospheric rise to the top continued for this late bloomer. At 25, he found himself in the Premier League and still couldn't stop himself scoring. Charlie Austin managed to score more goals than Christian Benteke and other incredible Premier League talents, and he played for arguably the worst team in the Premier League.
Sometimes talent, training and skill cannot top natural instincts and Austin has almost all four of those qualities in spades. Villa should be able to offer him a better supply and a better role than QPR as well as likely being able to offer a bit more money. Austin would fit perfectly in Villa's side and line up well against Agbonlahor or Kozak.
Even better? If Villa go crazy and bid £16 million for Austin, they would beat Newcastle and Leicester to him - which takes a incredible amount of firepower off teams which will be looking to beat AVFC next season.
The question goes over to you? Villa have about £20 - £30 million to spend. Who do you buy?