Aston Villa are interested in signing Gary Cahill on a free transfer ahead of their maiden season back in the top-flight, according to The Sun.
The 33-year-old will be released by the Blues following seven trophy-laden years at Stamford Bridge. A move to Villa Park would see him return to the club where it all began for the central defender.
Cahill won the Champions League and two Premier League titles with Chelsea. His successful years were spent largely alongside John Terry, who is now part of the management staff at Villa.
The experienced defender played just eight times under Maurizio Sarri during 2018/19 and was largely frozen out. He didn’t start a single game in the Premier League under the Italian.
Villa’s promotion-winning squad and landing a player boasting Cahill’s experience can only bode well for the Premier League newcomers.
Cahill would be a pretty solid acquisition for Aston Villa, particularly on a free transfer.
A small stumbling block could be the £100k-a-week (Spotrac) that Cahill will leave behind at Chelsea. It seems fair to suggest that he will need to take a significant wage cut if he is to join Villa.
A return to his roots might tempt him into a pay-cut, however, whilst the lure of regular football would be a massive boost for him.
Only last summer Cahill was part of the England squad that reached the semi-finals. He wasn’t a regular in Gareth Southgate’s team but the fact he was called up speaks volumes about his reputation in the game.
If Villa complete the permanent signing of loan star Tyrone Mings, Cahill’s experience alongside him could be a masterstroke by Smith.