Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Aston Villa To Demand In Excess Of £50-£60m For This English Striker: Good Move By Smith?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent interview with Give Me Sport, renowned journalist Luke Hatfield revealed that Aston Villa are set to demand in excess of £50-£60m for Ollie Watkins. Hatfield said, “In terms of fee, Villa would want in excess of £50-£60m for him. They’ve spent a big amount of money to bring him in. It was around £30m to get him in from Brentford, it was a big fee at the time.

“And considering what he’s done at Villa, the fact that he’s broken into the England setup, how influential he is, not just with his goals but also the way he presses opposition players is absolutely vital for Villa.

“He is a player that they obviously hold in the highest regard, they won’t want to see him leave. It’s going to take a massive fee.”

Watkins’ Decent Start To This Premier League Campaign

Watkins has enjoyed a good start to this season as he has already put in some impressive displays as an important striker in Dean Smith’s starting XI. The Torquay-born marksman was involved in five matches for the Villans, finding the back of the net once across all fronts.

The 25-year-old has given a good account of himself by averaging 2.6 shots, 0.6 key passes and 1.4 dribbles per game in Premier League football. He has even taken care of possession well when linking up play with others around him, as evidenced by his pass success rate of 80.8% in the top tier of English football (stats via whoscored).

Aston Villa (Ollie Watkins)
LONDON, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 03: Ollie Watkins of Aston Villa salutes the fans after the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on October 03, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Eddie Keogh/Getty Images) The 4th Official uses images provided by the following image agency: Getty Images (https://www.gettyimages.de/) Imago Images (https://www.imago-images.de/)

Aston Villa Could Demand In Excess Of £50-£60m For Watkins: Good Move By The Villans?

Watkins has a good football IQ and is always willing to have a strike at goal when given time and space by the opposition. He can use his quickness and agility to make some decent runs with the ball in the final third.

The English striker has done well to transform himself into a reliable finisher in front of the opponent’s goal. Furthermore, he can lead the press quite well on his own high up the field and doesn’t mind working his socks off for the benefit of his side.

At the moment, Dean Smith simply cannot afford to let Watkins leave on the cheap. Hence, it makes a lot of sense for Aston Villa to ask for a big fee if one of the top clubs decide to make a move for him in the future.

Watkins is under contract at Villa Park until the summer of 2025, so there is no immediate need for the West Midlands club to cash in on their prized asset. All in all, demanding a fee in excess of £50-£60m seems to be a good move by Smith as such a price tag might fend off interest from other clubs for the English centre-forward next year.

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