Aston Villa have had an excellent campaign, but the chances of European football seems to have slipped from Villa’s grasp, for this season anyway. Earlier in the week, I brought you three players Villa should sign this summer, so as a follow up, I thought I would suggest three more players I think Villa should sign in order to take that next (and definitive) step.
1 – Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur: CM/CAM)
Dele Alli is a player that has obvious talent and he has shown it on multiple occasions at Spurs (his goal against Crystal Palace a few years ago comes to mind). Alli has perhaps not quite lived up to the potential he has shown on occasion at Tottenham, but there can be no doubt that he certainly has the ability and there is plenty of time for him to reach the potential that he has shown in his career to date. If Villa do not sign Ross Barkley, Alli would certainly be a great alternative to play the number 10 position for the Villans – and at a reported price tag of £25 million, makes this a very attractive option.
Alli is perhaps similar to Barkley in the respect that he has something to prove and he has the talent to play consistently at the top level; he just needs to have the platform to show that he still has the immense ability that he showed earlier in his career. You see Jesse Lingard restoring his reputation at West Ham, showing the ability that no-one doubted he had; you just think that should Dele Alli sign for Villa on a permanent or loan basis, it would be a great opportunity for him to once again showcase his talent.
I must also add that Dele Alli in a team with Jack Grealish is a mouth-watering prospect!
Whilst his appearances and contributions in the Premier League are not on par with previous seasons, his contribution for Spurs in the Europa League is very impressive. In his six appearances in the competition, he has scored two goals whilst providing three assists in which makes for very impressive reading.
If Villa could sign Dele Alli and get him back to his very best, this would be an inspired signing for Villa.
2 – Tammy Abraham (Chelsea: ST)
I know this is another obvious choice, but with Abraham finding minutes at Stamford Bridge difficult this season, he could do a lot worse than sign for Villa and provide excellent competition for Ollie Watkins.
Abraham scored 25 goals for Villa in his loan spell in the Championship and has remained on the lips of Villa fans far and wide ever since. Despite having somewhat limited opportunities at Chelsea this season, Abraham has still scored 12 goals in all competitions, whilst also providing six assists. With this output in limited game-time, he would almost certainly contribute further goals and assists should he be afforded more time on the pitch.
Abraham is a proven goal scorer with Premier League experience, and he is a player who is still young and still has development to do. Abraham and Watkins may be a feared strike force in the near future. Whilst we can only speculate what it would take to sign Abraham, it would likely be a significant outlay.
Abraham’s contributions to Villa in the past and what he has produced in limited minutes on the pitch may make this a risk worth taking for Villa this summer.
3 – Filip Helander (Rangers: CB)
The Swedish center-back has been part of the Rangers team that took the title away from Celtic, stopping their Old Firm rivals from retaining the Premiership title for the tenth season in a row. Helander has made twenty appearances for Rangers in the Premiership so far this season and he has been impressive, contributing a goal as well as achieving a pass success rate of 86% - when combined with the fact that he has won 4.3 aerial duels per game, it makes for a very impressive record. It must also be noted that this is only Helander’s second season at the club since he joined from Bologna in 2019.
What makes this transfer more justifiable is that Engels is likely to leave the club given his limited playing time this season, so this would mean that Villa would need to sign a player to fill the gap left by the Belgian. With a market value of £1.8 million, Villa could certainly do a lot worse than sign the Swedish international this summer. And, at 6’2” in height, he would certainly be good in the air, which he has shown with the amount of aerial duels he has won this season.
Should Villa make a move for the Rangers center-back, it could turn out to be a very good signing for the Villans.
- Josh Dasilva (Brentford) - The midfielder has been impressive for Brentford and he could be a good alternative option in midfield. This would be an even more realistic option given the existing relationship he has with Dean Smith.
- Milot Rashica (Werder Bremen) - The winger was subject to lots of speculation regarding his future at the club last summer and was linked to Villa on several occasions. Would he still be worth a punt?
- Allan Saint-Maximin (Newcastle United) - The winger has shone in a drab Newcastle side this season and is likely to leave should the Magpies get relegated. This might be a difficult one for Villa due to the amount of interest there may be, but it would still be a shrewd option for Villa.
- Emi Buendia (Norwich City) - The Argentine has been arguably the best player in the Championship for runaway leaders Norwich City, but given that Norwich look to be returning to the top flight, combined with the amount of interest, it would make this a tricky deal for Villa to agree.
- Sander Berge (Sheffield United) - The midfielder has been solid whilst with the Blades, despite the woeful season the club has endured this season and he has also been out with a long term injury. The Norwegian midfielder should certainly be an option for Villa.
Whoever Aston Villa sign this summer, this is sure to be an exciting summer for everyone of the Villa persuasion and with recent news that Villa are looking into contract extensions for Tom Heaton, after already securing Ezri Konsa’s long-term future, Villa’s future is looking ever brighter.