Aston Villa dealt transfer blow in pursuit of international star

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Aston Villa are surely one of the success stories of the summer transfer window.

Last term was a difficult campaign for the midlands side as they adjusted to life back in the Premier League.

In fact, it took until the final weekend of the season for Dean Smith's side to finally secure their top flight status for another season.

But now it seems that the club are keen to kick on.

Last summer the focus in the transfer market was to sign a quantity of player who could keep them in the league - however this time around the target is notably different.

Aston Villa have aspirations of pushing themselves away from the basement and establishing themselves as a regular feature in the first team.

That's why this summer has seen them focus on addition quality players to improve the first team.

Deals to bring in Matty Cash, Ollie Watkins, Emiliano Martinez and Bertrand Traore have sent a huge signal of intent to the rest of the league, but it seems that they're far from done.

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Smith has already revealed that the club are looking to add quality in central midfield, and that has seen them linked with a number of players.

However a fresh report has dealt them a significant transfer blow.

Football Insider have claimed that target Ross Barkley will no longer be moving on this summer.

The Chelsea midfielder has fallen down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge leading to suggestions that he could be allowed to leave before the transfer window slams shut.

A loan switch to either Aston Villa or Leeds United had been tipped for the England international, however this now seems to be off the table.

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Barkley has reportedly told the Chelsea hierarchy that he intends to stay in west London in order to fight for his place in Frank Lampard's side.

GIVEMESPORT'S Phil Spencer says...

This is certainly a blow for Aston Villa.

Dean Smith is looking to add more quality to the central areas of his midfield and Ross Barkley would certainly have ticked the boxes.

Valued at £19.35million by Transfermarkt, the England international should be playing regularly in the Premier League.

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However it seems that this won't happen with Chelsea.

A move to Villa Park would have given him a platform to show exactly what he can do on a regular basis, but that now appears unlikely to happen.

While it's a blow for Smith, it means that the Villa boss can now focus his efforts elsewhere to ensure that a suitable player is brought in before the window.

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