Garde should make ex-Premier League ace Steed Malbranque his first Aston Villa signing from Lyon

Former Fulham, Sunderland and Tottenham Hotspur ace Steed Malbranque could be of short-term use to Remi Garde at Aston Villa.

Remi Garde is the current favourite to take over as Aston Villa boss after Tim Sherwood's sacking, with SkySports reporting he has cancelled his scheduled punditry duties in France.

He is out of work after departing Lyon in the summer, and SkySports also report he has held talks with Villa over the job.

With the club bottom of the Premier League, additions may be required in January, and it would not be a surprise to see him look back towards Lyon for additions.

Obviously the likes of Alexandre Lacazette will be out of his price and target range, but a former Premier League attacker could be of use.

Former Sunderland, Tottenham and Fulham midfielder Steed Malbranque is still playing for Lyon at the age of 35, having been signed on a free transfer by Garde in 2012.

As a player the manager trusts, and with knowledge of the Premier League, Malbranque could be a smart addition on a short-term deal.

The midfielder's contract runs out in June, meaning Villa could snap him up at a cut down price, and even if he acts as an impact substitute, he could be a useful link man in the dressing room from a language perspective as well as on the pitch, in terms of communicating Garde's philosophy.

This season Malbranque has made five Ligue 1 appearances with one assist to his name, and also featured off the bench in the Champions League.

With Villa needing all the help they can get, this potentially low cost transfer could have a high upside if it goes any way to getting the best out of other players and helping the club avoid relegation.

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