Aston Villa have not been shy when it comes to spending money to bring new players to the Midlands club over recent years.
One figure the Villans spent a significant amount of money to sign is Leon Bailey, who joined the club back in the 2021 summer transfer window from Bayer Leverkusen in a deal worth £25m.
Since then, the winger has made 37 appearances for Villa across all competitions, scoring five goals and delivering four assists along the way prior to the club’s FA Cup match against Stevenage.
With Unai Emery now in the midst of his first transfer window since being appointed as Villa’s new manager back in October, this month could give him the chance to add some strength and depth to his squad in terms of bringing new players to the club.
One player that has been linked with a move to Villa Park that we feel would provide an upgrade on Bailey is Udinese winger Gerard Deulofeu, who was apparently valued at £17m by his club during the previous summer transfer window.
After spending some time in England with the likes of Everton and Watford, the 28-year-old joined his current club on an initial loan deal in 2020 before becoming a permanent player in the 2021 January transfer window.
During his time with Udinese, the winger, who has been described as being “unplayable” at times by journalist Josh Bunting on Twitter, has found the net 18 times and provided 14 assists in 67 appearances prior to their league match against Juventus.
In terms of being an upgrade on Bailey, the duo’s latest domestic campaigns have shown why this would be the case if Emery were to bring Deulofeu back to England.
Specifically, the Spaniard has a superior passing accuracy percentage than Bailey (75.2% vs 62%) as well as making significantly more key passes than the Villa winger (47 vs 15).
Would you take Gerard Deulofeu at Villa?
In addition to that, Deulofeu has shown how much more of a presence he has in front of goal than the Jamaican as he boasts a higher rate of shots at goal per 90 minutes (3.31 vs 2.03).
Having also picked up a higher percentage of successful dribbles than Bailey (43.2% vs 38.9%), the Udinese star has a much higher rate of shot-creating actions per 90 minutes as well (6.16 vs 2.87).
Taking all of this into account, it’s safe to say that if Emery were to sign the former Watford winger and he was able to bring the sparkling attacking form he’s shown in Italy this season to Villa Park, it could be a big concern for Bailey and his place in the team.