Duncan Castles has been speaking on the latest edition of The Transfer Window podcast about Aston Villa’s interest in Emile Smith Rowe.
Now they are looking to take Smith Rowe from the Gunners, according to The Telegraph.
The 20-year-old has just two years left on his contract at the Emirates Stadium, but proved to be a bright spark in the 2020/21 campaign for Arsenal as he scored four goals and provided seven assists across all competitions.
However, it looks like Villa want him.
Castles said: “Aston Villa actually have, I’m told, a substantial budget to work with. They are one of the better-placed teams in the Premier League [post-pandemic].
“This week, they’ve signed Buendia from Norwich City for an initial £33m that is a ‘half-replacement’ for Grealish, as it’s been described to me, and they’re looking at other attacking midfielders coming in as well.
“One of the players they’ve sounded out is Emile Smith Rowe, who broke into the Arsenal team to great effect this season. He is under contract until 2023, so something needs to be done by Arsenal in terms of extending that deal or seeing and being tempted by other clubs.
“I think it would be quite damaging for Arsenal if they were seen to lose a young talent like that to a club like Aston Villa.”
Do you think that Smith Rowe would be a good signing?
Yes, he would be fantastic
No, he isn't that good
TIF Thoughts on Smith Rowe…
Castles seems to suggest that if Villa were to sign Smith Rowe, he would be coming in as a replacement for Jack Grealish, which would be a shame.
It would be fantastic to see Buendia, Grealish, and Smith Rowe together in the same team behind Ollie Watkins, and we hope that happens.
If that were to happen, then you could argue that Villa are not messing about and clearly want to improve on last season’s 11th-place finish.
It remains to be seen what happens, but we think Smith Rowe could be an excellent signing for Villa and would be impressed if they pull it off.