Aston Villa continue to be paired with transfer speculation with both incomings and outgoings being touted involving Douglas Luiz, Kerr Smith and Neil Taylor.
Dean Smith and the players will be focused on finishing as high as possible in the Premier League this season, but plans to improve the squad this summer are likely being formulated already.
If Villa want to take that next step and compete for European qualification spots, then more quality will need to be added to this squad to make us more competitive, but there is talk of possible exits as well as potential signings when the transfer window opens.
Douglas Luiz replacements suggested
As per BirminghamLive, there is still uncertainty at this stage over Luiz’s future with us, as Man City have an option to exercise their £27.5m buy-back clause, if they wish to take the Brazilian midfielder back to the Etihad this summer.
If they were to do so, that would leave a gaping hole in our midfield, and that void would have to be filled as a priority this summer.
The report goes on to suggest Yves Bissouma, Harry Winks and Okay Yokuslu as potential solutions, and so it remains to be seen if any of that trio arrive this summer to replace Luiz, in the event that he leaves.
Having established himself as a key figure in the side, it would be a big blow to lose him. That said, Villa arguably need to add more quality and competition in that department anyway and so a signing for the midfield could be expected regardless.
Villa lead Kerr Smith race
Elsewhere, the Metro report that Villa are leading the transfer scrap for Dundee Utd youngster Smith, with Man Utd also said to be interested in the 16-year-old.
Naturally, he would be a long-term signing to offer another option in central defence in the future as he continues to develop, and so time will tell if we can indeed win the race for his signature.
The report adds that it could cost around £500,000 to bring him to Villa Park, while our ability to perhaps offer him a clearer and quicker path to the first-team could be pivotal.
Taylor has interest ahead of likely Villa exit
Meanwhile, BirminghamLive report that Taylor is attracting plenty of interest as he prepares to become a free agent this summer, with his Villa contract set to expire next month.
The 32-year-old could be viewed as a decent back-up option at left-back to provide depth and cover, but with Stoke City, QPR, Istanbul Basaksehir and Trabzonspor all being paired with an interest and offering more regular playing time, that might sway him to move on even if we did offer him new terms.
The Welshman has been a great servant to the club having made over 100 appearances, but with Matt Targett cementing himself as first choice in that role, it looks as though he could be heading for the exit door this summer.