Aston Villa boss Tim Sherwood responds to links with Monaco defender Aymen Abdennour

Tim Sherwood Press Conference Smiling 12/02/2014

The 26-year-old Tunisian was reported to be a target for Villa but it now looks like there may not be much truth to the rumours.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood has shot down rumours linking the club with a move for Monaco defender Aymen Abdennour at his pre-match press conference for Friday’s Manchester United clash.

The likes of French news outlet Foot Mercato reported earlier this week that Villa had joined Barcelona and Roma in the race to sign the Tunisian centre-back, 26, after his agent revealed that English clubs are pursuing his signature.

“The truth is that Abdennour wants to leave,” agent Abdelkader Jilani told Tuttomercatoweb. “He wants a new adventure and there are opportunities in Spain, Italy and England.”

However, it looks like Villa are not one of the teams chasing Abdennour after all, with Sherwood telling reporters that he had never even heard of the 33-times capped stopper.

“I don’t know him,” he said, before joking: “I don’t know the player so we probably are!”

However, despite bolstering his squad with nine new additions so far this summer, Sherwood did stress that he still has fund to make further signings before the transfer window closes.

“I said after the game against Bournemouth, if there’s anyone available who can improve us then we’ll be bringing them in if it’s possible,” he added. “The club have backed me to bring in players for the future of this football club and that’s what we’ve done.

“It’s going to be difficult to integrate all these players but it’s certainly a challenge that I’m relishing.

“We’re buying a lot of young players, so that helps because some of them don’t have to be named in the 25-man squad.”

The latest player incoming is believed to be Barcelona’s 19-year-old winger Adama Traore, who is expected to seal a £7 million move to the Midlands before the end of this week after Villa beat both Liverpool and Stoke to his signature [h/t Telegraph].

The youngster’s three-year contract will also reportedly contain a buy-back clause on Barca’s insistence but, given his renowned potential, that seems like a gamble well worth taking if it means securing the services of one of Europe’s most exciting talents.

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch