Report: Aston Villa closing in on deal for Hajduk Split goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic

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The 25-year-old Croatian has recently been linked with Inter Milan and Lazio but reportedly wants a move with better chances of first-team football.

Aston Villa could be set to land a new No. 1 goalkeeper, if reports are to be believed.

According to Italian journalist Alfredo Pedulla, the club are closing in on a €3 million [£2.3 million] deal for Hajduk Split shot-stopper Lovre Kalinic after overtaking the likes of Inter Milan and Lazio in the race for his signature.

The report comes after lalaziosiamonoi.it claimed earlier this month that the Croatia international would prefer to join Villa rather than the Serie A sides because of the prospect of more first-team football in the West Midlands.

Summer signing Mark Bunn has started the claret and blues’ past two Premier League games due to Brad Guzan’s increasingly error-strewn performances this term, but the 31-year-old is not seen as a long-term option between the posts.

Manager Remi Garde was said to be targeting Marseille’s Steve Mandanda ahead of the winter transfer window [h/t Telegraph], but with the French custodian since announcing his intentions to see out the final six months of his contract at the Stade Velodrome, he is now believed to have turned his attentions to Kalinic.

The 25-year-old keeper, who stands at an imposing 6ft 7in, recently set a new club record for Hajduk of going eight games without conceding a goal and has recorded a formidable 14 clean sheets in 28 total appearances so far this season.

He has recently been linked with a host of clubs as a result, including high-flying Leicester City and Sunderland [/h/t Daily Mail], and the Croatian side are now said to be open to selling him as he enters the final 18 months of his deal.

There have obviously been fears that Villa’s league position – nine points from safety at the foot of the table – could deter potential new recruits from joining the club this month, but that does not seem to be a problem in the case of Kalinic.

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