Monday, 20 June 2016

Are AFCB in the box seat to sign French midfielder?

The gossip is growing around Jordan Veretout being unsettled at Aston Villa following their drop to the Championship. He is a young central midfielder but who can also play in the number 10 role. He would add strength to the Cherries going forward and like Hyndman he has attracted quite a lot of interest from European clubs but the Cherries could well be in the box seat if the Tommy Elphick deal also goes through the other way.

At 23 Veretout is a player that has at least experienced the Premier League and has also played for Nantes in France. With 25 league appearances for Aston Villa, he has not had a great start to life in England with a side that found itself in the relegation zone virtually all season, but it is hard to thrive in a struggling side. He even played in the first game of the season against AFCB last season.

Whether Veretout is extra to Di Matteo's need is hard to tell as a young player with energy and high enough skill to play in the French U21 side is certainly a good player to have in the Championship. But Tim Sherwood signed him on a five-year deal last July and while he may not be the highest paid player at the club, Aston Villa will want to cut wages in some places.

While the Sun commented that Veretout was an Eddie Howe target back in May there have only been football bloggers mentioning the Frenchman's name closely linked with the Cherries, but AFCB were said by the Birmingham Mail to have been tracking the player last summer as well before he signed for Villa. AFCB may have to move quickly now though as Celtic are said to be keeping tabs on Veretout, according to the Scotsman. Lille and Celta Vigo have also been linked to the player.

Personally, I think Veretout would be a sensible signing as he has had a year in England now and knows what pressures the Premier League bring and he is likely to find things easier if he can find a club that is looking to push its way up the league with similar enthusiastic young players.

Tommy Elphick Tommy Elphick was said by the Bournemouth Echo to be undergoing a medical at Aston Villa this week ahead of his expected move to the Midlands club.

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