Dean Smith’s Premier League survival battlers Aston Villa have been linked with MLS winger Gaitan and Austria Vienna striker Monschein.
How on earth did Aston Villa spent over £100 million in the summer, yet still find themselves counting down the days until the January transfer window swings open?
None of Villa’s many off-season additions could be labelled anything resembling a ‘flop’, even if Wesley Moraes and Matt Targett have not quite lived up to expectations. But the Premier League is a ruthless world and even the smallest weaknesses in Dean Smith’s squad have been brutally exposed.
The Midland giants have performed impressively in most of their 12 top flight games so far but fine margins make the difference at this level. Time and again, Aston Villa have thrown away points in the final few minutes (see Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool) after being made to pay for their profligacy at the other end. Wesley and Trezeguet, we’re looking at you.
The January window gives money-bags Villa the opportunity to sharpen up an often blunt forward line, however, and early reports suggest that they have their eyes on a pair of signings who could turn those defeats into draws, those draws into wins.
At the age of 31, Nico Gaitan could finally be on his way to the Premier League. The Guardian reports that Aston Villa want to snap up the Chicago Fire winger on a free transfer and, while his days at Atletico Madrid and Benfica have been consigned to the distant past, Gaitan still possesses the sort of game-changing technical ability that few in Smith’s squad can match.
The Argentina international has produced 11 assists in the MLS in 2019. Imagine the havoc he could wreak in claret and blue, alongside Christoph Monschein for example?
Sport24 reports that the Austria Vienna striker could be on his way to Villa Park for £4.5 million, having found the net 13 times in 19 matches so far this season.
With Jonathan Kodjia a shadow of his former self and Keinan Davis hardly a prolific goalscorer, a poacher like Monschein could be the sort of signing who keeps the wolves from Aston Villa’s door – particularly if he’s got Gaitan providing the ammunition.