Aston Villa have already agreed on a deal to sign Emi Buendia from Norwich City and now the Villa Park outfit have shifted their focus to James Ward-Prowse, as per The Guardian.
Paul Doyle writes: “Aston Villa are set to make a move for Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse, a day after agreeing a club-record £30m-plus deal to sign Emiliano Buendía from Norwich.
“Dean Smith is eager to complete transfers as quickly as possible as Villa prepare for another season of progress in the Premier League.”
James Ward-Prowse has been in sensational form for Southampton and during the 2020-21 season, the midfielder played in all 38 Premier League games for the Saints, scoring eight and assisting seven goals.
Liverpool had been previously linked with a move for the 26-year-old as a potential replacement for Gini Wijnaldum but with time, these rumours have fizzled out and now Ward-Prowse looks all set to join Aston Villa.
Villa clearly mean business this summer and if this £30 million bid goes in then they would have already spent £60-odd million in the first few days of the transfer window.
But if Dean Smith’s words are anything to go by then the club does not intend to make too many signings this summer and their new arrivals might only be limited to England based players.
🥅 Most direct free-kicks scored in Europe's top 5 leagues last season – 4⃣
🦅 Sergej Milinkovic-Savic
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🗞️ Not content with just Emiliano Buendia, Aston Villa are believed to be lining up a bid for Ward-Prowse pic.twitter.com/WpSKBcX7ZI
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) June 6, 2021
“In terms of our recruitment, we talk about the sweet spots that we’re looking for,” Smith had said a few days ago. “which is that the players have Premier League experience and are [ideally] British because there is no adaptation risk at all.”
James Ward-Prowse will surely add a lot of quality in the middle of the pitch and also in set-pieces for Aston Villa and if Smith can hold onto Jack Grealish beyond the summer then the trio of Buendia, Grealish and Ward-Prowse could become a formidable force in the Premier League next season.
The 26-year-old is one of the most complete midfielders in the English top division right now and like Wijnaldum, he is a force in midfield. No wonder Liverpool have been linked with him.
This past season, he has been in started each and every Premier League game for Southampton. To give an indication of his importance, James Ward-Prowse has played 3420 minutes in the league this season meaning effectively he has completed 90 minutes in each and every match.
He is the type of player who is likely to sit in central midfield and dictate play and according to Whoscored, some of his strengths are taking set-pieces and shooting from outside of the box.