Aston Villa: Gerrard could bring £50m star to Villa Park

Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard may be targeting Allan Saint-Maximin as the forward has ‘a little bit of X-Factor’, according to journalist Pete O’Rourke.

The Midlands outfit have been linked with a surprise move for the 25-year-old in recent weeks after he was reportedly made available for transfer by current side Newcastle United.

What is the latest news involving Saint-Maximin?

According to Daily Mail, Newcastle are ‘willing to cash in’ on Saint-Maximin in order to boost the summer transfer kitty of new manager Eddie Howe.

It’s stated that the Magpies are set to demand £50 million for their talisman, with the proceeds of his potential departure to be made available for new signings.

Newcastle became the richest football club in the world following their Saudi-backed takeover last year, but reports have suggested there will not be unlimited funds to spend ahead of next season.

The Telegraph has claimed that Howe will only be given £90m to play with ahead of next season, the same figure he spent in January, as they plan to pursue a policy described as ‘pragmatic ambition’.

And Aston Villa are believed to be among the clubs who ‘are monitoring developments’ with Saint-Maximin ahead of a possible move.

What has O’Rourke said about Saint-Maximin?

O’Rourke believes Gerrard may be targeting the former France Under-21 international as he provides ‘a different dimension in the final third’.

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He told GiveMeSport: “He’s just got a little bit of X-Factor. So, it’s maybe something Steven Gerrard is looking to add to his list of attacking options because probably the biggest issue since he’s arrived has been the lack of goals for Villa. And that’s even with Coutinho coming into the team.

“So, getting in someone like Saint-Maximin, it just gives you a different dimension in the final third as well.”

Do Villa need Saint-Maximin?

Saint-Maximin was described as “unplayable” by Frank Lampard earlier in the season, and Villa could perhaps do with his attacking impetus at present.

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Current wide options Emiliano Buendia, Leon Bailey and Bertrand Traore have registered a combined total of three goals and six assists in their 53 Premier League appearances this season.

That figure is only one more than what Saint-Maximin has provided for Newcastle, indicating he could offer an upgrade on Gerrard’s options at present.

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