Villa appear to be moving swiftly to replace ousted Steven Gerrard, with a number of reputable sources reporting that Unai Emery may be close to agreeing on a deal.
The Villarreal manager, who rejected the approach of Newcastle United last year, is now understood to be in advanced negotiations with Villa. The La Liga side have reportedly accepted an offer of €6m in compensation and resigned themselves to the fact that their manager wants a second shot at the Premier League.Embed from Getty Images
There remains a long list of candidates for Villa to sift through, but given a number of top names have politely declined, the club must now move swiftly to acquire a top target.
It has been widely reported that Villa have also given genuine consideration to Sporting’s boss Ruben Amorim. The rising talent of European football, known for his particularly good English, had guided the Portugeuse side to their first title in almost 20 years. Despite Amorim’s release fee dropping from €30m to €10m, Villa are now likely to opt for the more experienced Emery.
Whilst Emery is perhaps better known in England for his unsuccessful stint at Arsenal, the 50-year-old won three successive Europa League titles at Sevilla, then Ligue 1 and two French Cups with PSG. He again won the Europe League with Villarreal whilst also steering them to the Champions League semi-finals.
More to follow...