Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard has made bringing in a new central midfielder his top priority during the January window, according to transfer insider Dean Jones.
Gerrard has been at the helm for close to two months, having been appointed as the Midlands club’s head coach in November, and he has set his sights on bolstering the squad he inherited.
Who have Villa been linked with signing?
Having left Scottish Premiership champions Rangers in order to take on the Villa job, Gerrard has been linked with raiding his former club for two midfielders.
It has been reported that Villa are in pole position to sign Joe Aribo despite interest from elsewhere because of Gerrard’s influence.
Away from Rangers, Ashley Preece – the Villa reporter for BirminghamLive – has revealed that Coventry City’s Gustavo Hamer is a player Gerrard admires.
Gerrard and his Villa Park assistant Gary McAllister were spotted watching the Championship derby between the Sky Blues and Birmingham City from the stands a matter of weeks after their arrival.
Villa fans, meanwhile, have called for Gerrard to target Manchester United duo Jesse Lingard and Donny van de Beek.
What has Dean Jones said about the situation?
Jones reckons Gerrard is desperate to bolster his options in the heart of Villa’s midfield ahead of the window’s closure at the end of the month.
The transfer insider believes the 41-year-old is focused on bolstering that position before looking into improving his squad in other areas of the pitch.
Jones told GIVEMESPORT: “I do think that a central midfielder is the number one priority.
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“That’s what they’re looking at first before they get onto those other slots that will just strengthen up the squad.”
Why is it necessary for Gerrard to strengthen Villa’s central midfield options?
Gerrard was given permission to recruit a new midfielder after it was confirmed that Marvelous Nakamba will be on the sidelines for up to four months due to a knee injury sustained at Liverpool last month.
There is also speculation surrounding the future of Douglas Luiz, with ESPN reporting that Arsenal are tracking the Brazilian.
John McGinn is also understood to be on Manchester United’s list of potential targets due to doubts surrounding the long-term futures of Paul Pogba, Lingard and van de Beek.
Read More – January Transfer Window 2022: When does it open, when does it close and which players are going to move?