It's been a tumultuous summer at Aston Villa, and we've seen pretty much every footballer from here to the South of France linked with a move to B6. Obviously, whilst Tim Sherwood has been busy, signing 10 players so far, it wasn't possible to sign all of the players that the club were linked with. So without further ado, let's take a look at the ones that got away, and what has become of them.
Obviously, Aston Villa have been linked to an awful lot of players this summer. I'm not going to cover everyone, but rather I'm trying to limit it to 20, 10 today, and 10 tomorrow. Of course, that's just an arbitrary number so I might end up changing my mind. But you guys are Aston Villa fans, so you should be used to people changing their minds this summer...
First off is Aymen Abdennour, partly because his name starts with an A, and partly because this rumour was fairly recent. It was a bit of an odd link to start with, because a seemingly world class player in Abdennour was being linked with both Villa and Newcastle, who are sadly not world class sides at present. But before we got too excited, Abdennour swapped the money of Monaco for a Spanish switch to Valencia. To be fair to Abdennour, Valencia are in the Champions League this year, so you can't really blame him for turning down a move to Villa. But hey, Villa have signed Joleon Lescott instead*, so really, Tim Sherwood's gotten the better deal. I mean, Lescott has 26 caps for England. 26 more than Aymen Abdennour.
*Joleon Lescott hasn't actually signed as of the time of writing. So if he hasn't signed and you are reading this, please ignore the last part!
Verdict: Never going to happen.
From a recent and high profile rumour to an older and lower key move, Villa were linked to Barnsley's Mason Holgate in early July. This one actually looked likely to happen for a while, as Villa needed a defender, and Holgate is a defender, so it all made perfect sense. Sadly, it went quiet for a while, before Everton were revealed to have signed him exactly a month later, and for twice as much as Villa were rumoured to be offering. You could argue that it's a blow to lose out on a decent prospect to a divisional rival, but then again, Villa have some decent defensive prospects of their own in Easah Suliman and Kevin Toner.
Verdict: No big deal.
So way back at the start of the summer, back when Britain was actually experiencing nice weather for once, Aston Villa were being linked with Leicester striker Jamie Vardy. If you click that link, you'll see that Robert described Vardy as a "loathsome striker," and this was before Vardy racially abused someone in a casino. Nice guy. Still, this was back when everyone was expecting Benteke to leave, and Villa were definitely in the market for replacements. Thankfully, Tim Sherwood looked elsewhere so Villa fans will only have to see Vardy's stupid face twice this year. Thank heavens for that.
Verdict: Bullet dodged.
Victor Moses and Aaron Lennon
Victor Moses and Aaron Lennon, both right wingers, both linked with Aston Villa this summer. That's why they are grouped together, cool? Cool. Neither are going to sign though for a couple of reasons. One, Villa have already signed a right winger in Adama Traore, who has more upside than the two combined. But also Victor Moses signed for West Ham today, so the possibility of him signing is laughable. As for Aaron Lennon, he seems content to sit out the last year of his contract at Spurs, and really, you can't blame him. If I was getting paid £2.8 million (estimate) a year to not really do anything, damn right I would.
Verdict: Don't hate the player, hate the game.
The best looking player to be linked with Aston Villa this summer, Anderlecht's Dennis Praet was linked with the club for quite a while. Villa were even quoted a price of £10 Million for the Belgian international, but it just never happened sadly. Praet is still at Anderlecht, so he could yet make a late move this window, but that looks unlikely at this stage. Amusingly, West Brom actually made a serious bid for Praet this summer and he flat out turned them down.
Verdict: He never signed, but the dude is still a Villa legend.
Tom Huddlestone and Jake Livermore too...I guess
Ahh yes, the start of the summer. When Tim Sherwood was being linked to every single former Spurs player. Obviously, neither ended up signing for Villa, or even leaving relegated Hull City for that matter. Huddlestone ended up undergoing ankle surgery during the summer, ruining any chance of a summer switch. Livermore meanwhile is currently suspended after testing positive for cocaine. Circumstances make it a tough break for the guy, but it's a bullet well dodged regardless.
Verdict: Villa ended up buying better players in the same position anyways.
Massimo Luongo and Ben Gladwin
Tim Sherwood embarked on a Swindon scouting mission earlier this summer, setting his sights on another midfield duo. This one seemed quite plausible, but ultimately may have just been another "Sherwood linked with ex-Spurs player" story. Ultimately, both ended up signing for recently relegated QPR, citing a need for first team football. It's hard to begrudge the duo that, and playing in the Championship would give them more playing time than they would otherwise have at Villa.
Verdict: Better deal for the players, no big deal for Villa.
The exotically named Dutchman was linked with a move from Eredivisie side Groningen to Villa in July, looking set to follow his former teammate Leandro Bacuna to the Midlands. A deal for the 27 year old right winger never followed, and like Luongo and Gladwin, he found his way to Loftus Road. His career at QPR has actually gotten off to a good start, he has three goals in his first five appearances. His name, as cool as it is, isn't Adama Traore, so it's no big loss for Tim Sherwood's side.
Verdict: A good player, but Villa have bought better.
This was one of those rumours that never seem to go away. This year's Hiroshi Kiyotake if you like. Sergi Darder is a young and exciting Spanish midfielder playing for La Liga side Malaga. He was linked to the club around the same time as the Fabian Delph debacle took place, and he was at one point looked at as a potential replacement for Delph. That was before Delph decided to stay and then change his mind again. Ultimately, Villa went with Idrissa Gana, and later Jordan Veretout instead. Stuck at Malaga, Darder was of course devastated and...lol no he signed for French title contenders Lyon later in the window instead. Bon voyage Sergi, we will never know what might have been, but we can watch him playing for Lyon in the Champions League this season. Some consolation huh.
Verdict: It's a shame that we didn't sign him. Sure we have others in the position, but the dude looks legitimately good.
The transfer window is now firmly shut, and part one is done! Come back later in the week for part two; featuring Frenchmen, strikers, and a little bit of Jazz. Adios.