Championship side Aston Villa have reportedly shown interest in signing Maritimo midfielder Josip Vukovic during the summer.

Vukovic joined Maritimo last summer and during the course of the 2018-19 season, the defensive midfielder has come up with a number of fine displays.

A number of European clubs have scouted the 26-year-old this season and up until now, it looked like Rangers were leading the race to sign Vukovic at the end of the season.

Steven Gerrard has been looking to bring in a defensive midfielder who has the ability to play out from the back and given the performances that Josip Vukovic has given this season, the Croatian fits the bill perfectly.

But now it looks like Aston Villa have also joined the race to sign the defensive midfielder.

A couple of months ago it was revealed that Josip has a release clause of £3.4million which means the player fits perfectly into the budget of Aston Villa.

While this amount is certainly within the reach of Rangers but Gerrard might have to sell out a few players in order to gather that much fund for the midfielder.

Aston Villa will not be qualifying for the Premier League next season and given that both Glenn Whelan and Mile Jedinak are out of contract during the summer, Dean Smith will have to cut down his budget.

And for £3.4million, Josip Vukovic looks like a very decent buy.

Read: Here are the SPFL post-split fixtures including the broadcasters who will be showing all the games.

Read: Steven Gerrard makes a bold call regarding Rangers’ training session.