Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce ‘absolutely loves’ Peterborough United winger Marcus Maddison.
With Villa legend Brian Little travelling down to London Road to watch Maddison on a number of occasions last season, it seems that MacAnthony might be right.
And, according to Peterborough’s head honcho, Bruce’s admiration for the former Gateshead starlet was only amplified as he inspired a 3-1 win away to Villa in the third round of the FA Cup earlier this month.
As it stands, Maddison has set up more goals than any other player (13) in the whole of the Football League this season.
So while Villa do not have the funds to target a deal for the 23-year-old now, thanks to Financial Fair Play, do not rule out the Midlands rivals making a move if they are promoted or manage to sell a couple of their fringe players such as Ross McCormack or Tommy Elphick.
Maddison, however, could already be playing his football in England’s second city.
MacAnthony adds that then-Birmingham City manager Harry Redknapp had the chance to sign a player the Peterborough chairman rates as the best play-maker outside the Premier League on a cut-price deal.
But Redknapp passed up the chance and, with the Blues stuck at the wrong end of the table, that decision looks a bad one in hindsight.
Although with Bruce’s admiration clear, could Villa make Birmingham pay?