There’s no room for sentimentality at Villa Park, and with “recycling” well and truly underway in the squad, Steven Gerrard looks set to continue the clear-out.
Gerrard cannot risk another repeat of Villa’s poor 14th finish and urgently needs to freshen up his midfield options if he’s to achieve this. We’ve already seen the arrival of Boubacar Kamara, but there is uncertainly about the futures of Douglas Luiz, Morgan Sanson, Trezeguet and even Scotland international John McGinn.Embed from Getty Images
Up for some serious scrutiny is Bertrand Traore, who after an underwhelming contribution last term, has been strongly linked with a move to Turkish side Fenerbahce.
The attacking midfielder, who failed to break through at Chelsea before a promising stint at Lyon, simply hasn’t kicked on at Villa Park. Injury and indifferent form from the bench combine to suggest that Gerrard will look to cash in and seek greater consistency amongst his options in the final third of the pitch.
Given the direction that the club hopes to head towards, it is difficult to see how that could feasibly be achieved without high calibre, high consistency players. Whilst showing glimpses of class, including a memorable ice cool finished against West Brom, the truth is that those moments have been far too infrequent.
The Burkina Faso international, who cost Villa around £17m in 2020, therefore seems surplus to requirements and an obvious candidate as Gerrard seeks to generate funds and free up wages for a fresh face.Embed from Getty Images