Lambert sticking with lower leagues for first Aston Villa January signing
It is arguably players with more high-level experience that Aston Villa most require in January, but Paul Lambert is once again heading to the lower leagues to boost the numbers in his squad.
The average age of the Villa team that drew at Swansea last time was the youngest in the club’s Premier League history, just 23 years and 119 days.
Despite this result halting a run of three successive heavy defeats, Villa are still 13/8 to be relegated and they currently sit just one point away from the bottom three.
Some more experienced heads may help complement the younger talent, but Lambert’s first new recruit of the January transfer window is set to be another player with their best years ahead of them that has never played in the Premier League.
Charlton’s Dale Stephens was prominent on Lambert’s summer shopping list, but the two clubs could not agree on a transfer fee, with Villa opting for Crewe captain Ashley Westwood instead.
However, Westwood is now out for three months with an ankle problem, leaving Villa once again short on midfield options.
Agreeing a fee appears to have been easier this time and is hard to believe that the 23-year-old will fail to agree personal terms with the chance to play in the Premier League beckoning.
Stephens is expected to bring more attacking impetus to Villa’s midfield, which has had trouble getting close enough to strikers Christian Benteke and Andreas Weimann in recent games.
Another supposed target does have greater experience, but would only arrive on loan.
Scott Sinclair has struggled for first-team opportunities at Manchester City since his move from Swansea and could profit from spending the second half of the season playing more football elsewhere.
He is another who could be an asset for Villa in an advanced midfield position off the strikers.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date