Aston Villa have put their transfer business on hold this summer until chairman Dr Tony Xia can correct their financial problems, according to latest reports. The Villans recently missed a tax payment which saw them in danger of a winding-up order from HMRC and their long-term future as a club is uncertain.
Xia has been accused of mortgaging the club’s future by investing heavily to attain promotion from the Championship without having a contingency plan in place if the Midlands outfit didn’t go up. Villa reportedly have buyers, but Xia needs to decide what his next step is.
Manager Steve Bruce will meet with technical director Steve Round to discuss transfers ahead of the new season, but it’s unlikely there will be funds to play with. Instead, there could be a mass exodus at Villa.
Recruitment will consistent of bargains and internal solutions
Aston Villa curbed their spending last summer to keep in line Financial Fair Play, signing free transfers and bringing players in on loan. They will have to do the same thing this summer as Xia hasn’t invested any money for recruitment. The Midlands outfit will have to part company with valuable assets to ensure the club have enough money to stay in business.
In Xia’s first season at Villa, the club spent £76m on new arrivals and finished 13th in the Championship. They couldn’t repeat the spending feat despite the need to get into the top-six as Xia had little money available. And Villa’s failure to win in the playoff final last season has cost them dearly and will affect their transfer activity this summer.
They only spent £2.5m last summer and that trend looks set to continue, with academy players likely to be promoted to replace first-team players sold. The most valuable first-teamers will have a price too, but fans shouldn’t expect anything other than free transfers and loans brought in to replace him.
What does Xia want to do with Villa?
Aston Villa are at a standstill until Xia makes clear his plans for the future. The owner is trying to sort investment to save the club but still wants to maintain a controlling stake. The players will return for pre-season training in the coming days and they should see their wages paid for June, but there is uncertainty beyond that.
Reports suggest Villa have had offers, but nothing serious enough to be accepted. Xia won’t want to leave without getting his money back, having spent roughly £70m to buy the club only two years ago, but the Villans are losing a lot of value due to their debt.
There won’t be any objectives in the Championship next season, only to consolidate and find a thrifty solution to building the squad again. Xia needs to clear the situation up with supporters as it’s been a summer to forget so far. Everything remains on hold.
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