Reports today are suggesting that Aston Villa are in the hunt for West Bromwich Albion midfielder Jake Livermore. The Sun reports that Steve Bruce is looking to sign the player in the summer. It would be a reunion from the pair, who previously worked together whilst Bruce was the manager at Hull City.
Since then the 28-year-old has moved on, joining West Bromwich Albion in January 2017 in a deal reported by ESPN to be in the region of £10 million. Whilst times are hard for the Baggies, who seem destined for relegation, the midfielder remains a member of the England squad and could head to Russia with his country this summer.
Aston Villa would clearly be getting their hands on a very talented midfield operator who Bruce knows very well. But whilst the deal might hang on the Villans achieving Premier League promotion, the news will not be welcome news for one Aston Villa player.
When Aston Villa paid Nottingham Forest £3 million, as reported by Sky Sports, for Henri Lansbury they were signing a star. The midfield maestro was arguably the best performing player in the Championship at that time.
A technical operator with a Premier League range of passing, an acute eye for goal and ferocious appetite for possession he was perfect for Steve Bruce’s Aston Villa.
That, however, has not proved to be the case. Instead, Lansbury has struggled to find any real consistent form, fitness or playing time at Villa Park.
Whether it be Conor Hourihane, Birkir Bjarnason, Glenn Whelan, Josh Onomah or Mile Jedinak – Lansbury is simply not in the picture.
This season the 27-year-old has started just five games in the Championship for the club. A hamstring injury earlier this term did not help, but even when fully-fit he is down in the pecking order.
If Livermore arrives, that will surely be that for the midfielder.
It will be a massive shame for him to have not had the desired impact at Villa. But at such a young age and with years of quality Championship experience on his CV, plenty of teams will come calling.
Villa will just hope to get their £3 million back on a player who never quite settled at Villa Park.