Aston Villa have reportedly made an enquiry for Lyon forward Moussa Dembele as Unai Emery eyes reinforcements up front this month.
As per the Villa boss in his press conference on Thursday, he confirmed that Danny Ings is set to join West Ham, and so that will leave us light up front and perhaps over-reliant on Ollie Watkins to lead the line for the rest of the season.
With Cameron Archer out on loan and incoming signing Jhon Duran likely to need time and patience to settle and adapt, there is seemingly a lack of firepower in the Villa squad for now, but that could be addressed before the transfer window deadline.
According to The Daily Mail, Villa have made an approach for Dembele, and with the 26-year-old’s current contract with Lyon set to expire this summer, it’s suggested that he could be allowed to leave for as little as £3m this month so that the Ligue 1 side can avoid losing him for nothing in a few months time.
Time will tell if an agreement can be reached between the two clubs and if Dembele is keen on a move to Villa, but the report above would suggest that he’s being targeted as a possible solution with Emery looking to bolster his options up top.
Dembele has fallen out of favour so far this season, but he has an impressive track record in recent years. He’s bagged 69 goals and 19 assists in 159 appearances for Lyon, while prior to that he scored 51 goals in 94 games for Celtic.
He also has experience of playing in England previously after his stint with Fulham, where he also showed his goalscoring ability with 19 goals in 64 outings.
In turn, he could be a sensible addition to the Villa squad, particularly if he is available for such a low fee, but it remains to be seen if we’re serious about signing him this month, or if Emery is prepared to wait until the summer to bring in a long-term solution that significantly improves the group.
The Spanish tactician is certainly being backed in the transfer market to allow him to stamp his mark on the squad, and while Ings’ departure would suggest that he didn’t fit into his plans and ideas moving forward, Dembele could be better suited to his style of play and at 26 could be a younger and less expensive option to have at his disposal.
As per The Telegraph, it’s been reported that Ings has moved on in a £15m deal, and so combined with trimming his salary off the wage bill, Villa have hopefully given themselves more flexibility and space in the transfer window to strengthen the squad where necessary.