Alex McLeish is reportedly ready to sign two of his former players currently plying their trade at Tottenham in David Bentley and Alan Hutton, along with England international Jermaine Defoe as he looks to rebuild his Villa side.
The Scot signed winger Bentley for Birmingham on a loan spell last season and worked with Hutton at Rangers before trying to sign him for the Blues this time last year. On that occasion McLeish reportedly had a bid of around £6m turned down for his fellow countryman, though Hutton’s stock is believed to have dropped significantly since then, with Villa thought to be readying a £3m bid as they look to replace Kyle Walker who signed a new 5-year contract with Spurs earlier this week.
Bentley would no doubt be seen as a like for like replacement for Ashley Young, as well as cover for any potential sale of Stewart Downing, and has been touted as a long time target for Villa, with Martin O’Neill reportedly harbouring an interest in the former Arsenal and Blackburn man before Houllier showed an interest last season.
The winger is believed to be part of a swoop that could also see Jermaine Defoe join Villa at a combined fee of around £15m according to some sources. The England international striker had a tough season at White Hart Lane last year and despite insisting otherwise, may well be open to a move in order to secure more regular first team action. Any potential signing of the 28-year-old would see him pair up with former Spurs teammate Darren Bent at Villa Park, a partnership which was rarely profitable at White Hart Lane with many suggesting the players’ games were too similar.
Last season, right back Alan Hutton, 26, made 21 league appearances for Tottenham, 19 of which were starts. In those games he netted twice and picked up a further assist along with 2 yellow cards. The Scot had a pass success rate of 78% of the 37.9 passes he averaged per game and won 64% of his aerial contests. Defensively, Hutton made an average of 2.3 tackles per game and 1.4 interceptions a match. He supplied an average of 0.7 successful crosses per game from full back.
David Bentley started just one league game for Tottenham last term before being sent out on loan to Birmingham where he started 9 games and made 4 substitute appearances. The 26-year-old failed to score in the league during his time with the Blues and picked up just 1 assist. A decent pass success rate of 78% from the wing was more impressive, though he averaged just 24 passes per game. Bentley attempted 1.6 crosses and the same number of long balls in an average match and made 1.2 key passes per game.
Jermaine Defoe made just 16 starts for Tottenham in the previous campaign, coming off the bench on a further 6 occasions. The England striker had a poor season by his standards in front of goal, netting just 4 times despite averaging 1.9 shots per game in the league and assisting twice. His pass success rate of 86% is very impressive for a front man, though he attempted just 12.3 passes per game on average, of which 1 on average, was a key pass.
Join the new Facebook group and follow our new Twitter page for regular updates on all things Villa at;
- Preview: Tottenham Hotspur vs Aston Villa – Prediction, Team News, Line-ups
- Huge Test for Emery – Aston Villa Predicted Lineup and Preview vs Tottenham Hotspur
- Aston Villa eye Europa Conference League success after impressive 2022-23 season
- Aston Villa forward Cameron Archer set to join Sheffield United in £18.5m deal
- Aston Villa in July: Four preseason fixtures as Emery aims for another excellent season
- Aston Villa make formal offer to sign Villarreal star Pau Torres
- Preview: Aston Villa vs Brighton & Hove Albion – prediction, team news, line-ups
- Preview: Aston Villa vs Newcastle United – prediction, team news, line-ups
- Aston Villa in April: Next seven Premier League fixtures
- Manchester City vs Aston Villa Preview – Prediction & Potential line-ups