The midfielder would have been a wonderful permanent signing for Aston Villa but instead he headed to Everton.
With another international break upon us, now is as good a time as any to reflect on Aston Villa’s start to the new Premier League season, specifically which summer target Tim Sherwood will most regret not getting his hands on.
Villa signed a large number of players during the summer and it was always going to take them time to settle at the club, but had he managed to secure the permanent signing of free agent Tom Cleverley there would have been no such need for a transitional period.
Cleverley spent last season on loan at Villa where he featured 33 times, scoring three goals in the process, and while it took him time to settle, Sherwood was soon getting the best out of him and it was a significant blow when the Manchester United player opted to move to Everton at the end of his contract.
Cleverley started this season well for the Toffees before injury curtailed his season, but had he signed on at Villa (with the Birmingham Mail suggesting he was very much wanted) there is every chance he will have continued where he left off, significantly helping a side in transition in the process.
As it is Villa have to hope their new signings – many of home have no previous experience of the Premier League – settle sooner rather than later and quickly mould themselves into an effective team.