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Aston Villa edge Middlesbrough to left-back reinforcement

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Bristol City defender chooses Villa Park over Riverside

Bristol City v Cheltenham Town - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

In the run up to the close of the transfer window and after securing their first signature of the year by running aground of #LoveNyland it’s reported that Aston Villa will shortly be welcoming in a shiny new defender.

Bristol Live has cited Football Insider reports that left back Joe Bryan has chosen to continue his career with Aston Villa. Birmingham Live is also reporting that the signing is set to be announced before Thursday.

Bringing Joe Bryan to the club for a value fee of only £5-£6 million would represent a coup for a Villa club that only sports Neil Taylor as a natural left back and had to run out the prior year’s slate playing the weekend’s hero Alan Hutton across the pitch from his familiar attacking sweet spot on the right.

While Taylor has been satisfactory in his time at Villa Park, his plaudits have generally ranged from “does a job” to “just fine” and at twenty-nine years old, isn’t likely to improve beyond.

Bryan, five years Taylor’s junior, can take over the starting spot now and into the future should Villa sign him past his current contract—the upcoming expiration of which has made him available to be pried from Ashton Gate. With only this year left on his current agreement, the Robins were facing one of the last few chances to see him out for a profit.

More to come, but it seems as if Villa has found a pearl that fits a place and to beat out competition from Middlesbrough to get there adds some flare to the move.