Aston Villa reportedly scout Brazilian centre-back Marcelo

Villa Park

Aston Villa continue to be linked with potential new arrivals.

According to a report from Portuguese newspaper A Bola, Aston Villa and Southampton have both been scouting Rio Ave centre-back Marcelo.

The 26-year-old Brazilian has played 104 times for his current club, scoring six goals and providing one assist in the process, and he has been an ever-present for the club in the league since returning from a torn knee ligament that brought a premature end to the last campaign.

Marcelo was a youth player first at Astral EC and then Vasco de Gama but he failed to make the grade at the famous club and it was not until 2011 that his career took off after he swapped Portuguese third division club Ribeirao for Rio Ave after just one season.

In 2013 he was crowned the team’s Player of the Year so he certainly has the talent, and given his career to date he should also have the drive to succeed if Villa or Southampton do make a move this month.

Villa in particular are in desperate need of reinforcements as they attempt to climb off the bottom of the Premier League and ultimately out of the relegation zone. But considering they are already 11 points adrift of safety with 20 matches played it could be too late for any January additions to work their magic…

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