It was confirmed during Steve Bruce’s post match interview following the Cardiff debacle that Rudy Gestede had travelled to discuss a transfer to Middlesbrough.
The timing of the transfer is particularly puzzling given that Villa will be short on numbers as Jonathan Kodjia and Jordan Ayew depart for the ACON [Africa Cup of Nations].
Equally, with Ross McCormack and Gabby Agbonlahor bereft of form and fitness, Gestede’s departure could be considered ill-timed at best.
Whilst The Villa Underground saw little to impress from Gestede during our dismal relegation season, the strong striker looked more suited to the Championship.
Indeed, the Benin striker’s early season form and goals were arguably one of few positives under the doomed Di Matteo reign.
Intriguingly from a Middlesbrough perspective perhaps, might be that Rudy genuinely struggled at Premier League level. Bought as a replacement for Christian Benteke, he lacked the footballing attributes to terrorise defences.
This must of course be put in the context of Villa’s worst Premier League side and it’s impotency in creating chances for the strikers. With that said, it underlines that the strong striker must have good service if his heading threat can be maximised.
Gestede also departs Villa a well regarded figure, often giving time back to the local community outside of his club commitments.
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- Set to join Premier League Middlesbrough.
- Reported fee in the region of £6 million pounds.
- Undergoing a medical on Teeside.
- 10 goals in 55 appearances for Villa.
- 4 goals in 19 Championship appearances for Villa.
- Started just 3 games under Steve Bruce.
- Joined from Blackburn Rovers in 2015.
- Former France youth international.
- Full international for Benin since 2013.
- Good header of the ball.
- Physical presence and a threat from set pieces.
- Committed individual; a trier.
- Technically limited, particularly on the floor.
- Struggles unless fed by width/crosses.
- Unconvincing against Premier League defences.