Report: Aston Villa ready to step up pursuit of Tottenham youngster Tom Carroll

Tom Carroll low quality

Villa boss Tim Sherwood reportedly sees the 23-year-old midfielder as the ideal replacement for Manchester City-bound Fabian Delph and could land his signature for as little as £2 million.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood is set to step up his pursuit of Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Tom Carroll following Fabian Delph’s shock departure, according to the Daily Star.

Carroll, 23, came up through the ranks to earn his Tottenham debut in August 2011 but has since struggled to keep himself in the first-team picture, having featured just 23 times for the club over the past four seasons.

After spending the 2013-14 campaign on loan in the Championship at Queens Park Rangers, the Watford-native joined Premier League rivals Swansea City last August for another season-long stint but saw injuries and strong competition for places limit him to 18 total appearances.

Now back at White Hart Lane for pre-season, the former England Under-21 international is already being pushed for a place in Mauricio Pochettino’s plans by fellow youngsters Dele Alli, Alex Pritchard and Harry Winks and, with his contract expiring in 2016, it remains to be seen whether he has a long-term future under the Argentine.

Sherwood, though, remains a big fan of Carroll’s, having worked with during his time as Tottenham’s technical director, and is claimed to see him as an ideal replacement for now-Manchester City man Delph.

The Star’s report claims that the slick-passing midfielder, who started two of England’s three group games at the European Under-21 Championship this summer, could be available for as little as £2 million this summer if Pochettino deems him surplus to requirements, making a mooted deal look like a no-brainer for Villa.

 2014-15 Premier League PositionTeamGoalsAssistsTotal Key PassesPassing AccuracyTotal Tackles MINSInterceptions MINSTouches MINSDispossessed MINSAppearancesMins Played
Tom Carroll MF Swansea 0 0 5 88% 40.71 62.91 1.15 115.33 13 692
Fabian Delph MF Aston Villa 0 3 36 85% 41.97 64.05 1.11 56.6 28 2,434

While still to shine in the top-flight, there is little doubt that Carroll possess a great deal of talent but, at 23, he needs regular minutes this coming campaign if he is to go on to fulfil his recognised potential.

Villa had also been linked with his signature last month prior to Delph’s departure [h/t The Sun] and, with new boy Idrissa Gueye, Ashley Westwood, Carlos Sanchez and Gary Gardner now the only options at Sherwood’s disposal, there is definite room for a more creative addition.

Under his former coach's mentorship, a switch to the Midlands could be the perfect move for Carroll to help him make his long-awaited breakthrough, although whether Spurs will be willing to cut ties with him still remains to be seen at this point.

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