Aston Villa

Aston Villa

Premier League • England

Aston Villa plot shock move for Leeds star Emery is ‘crazy’ about as swap deal involving World Cup winner mooted

tyler adams and weston mckennie of leeds united

Aston Villa are plotting an ambitious summer swoop for Leeds United midfielder Weston McKennie, who is on loan from Juventus, according to reports.

The Midlands club’s manager Unai Emery is thought to be a huge admirer of the 24-year-old, but the Whites may yet tie him down to a permanent deal.

Indeed, Leeds have the option to buy McKennie permanently from the Italian giants at the end of the season, so his future depends on whether they are willing to pay his buy-out clause.

The American joined the Whites on loan from Juventus in the winter market and so far has proved to be a solid addition to the squad.

Overall, McKennie has made eight appearances across all competitions for Leeds this term, with the Yorkshire club still very much in a relegation scrap.

The Whites have the option to buy the midfielder permanently for a fee of €34.5m (approx. £30.2m) this summer, but if they don’t, Aston Villa are expected to make their move.

Recently sacked Leeds manager Jesse Marsch was thought to be a key factor in McKennie heading to Elland Road, so he may prefer to move elsewhere ahead of next season.

READ MORE: Leeds midfielder will be shown the door this summer as major Tyler Adams blow emerges for Gracia

Juve consider swapping McKennie for Martinez

According to a report from TuttosportLeeds are unlikely to pay McKennie’s buy-out clause this summer, which would open the door for Aston Villa to sign him in a shock twist.

They add that Emery is ‘crazy’ about McKennie and may even sacrifice one of his own players to secure his services – Emiliano Martinez.

It’s no secret that the former Arsenal boss has a strained relationship with the Argentina international following their time together at the Emirates, with a departure from Villa Park looking increasingly likely.

It is believed that Juventus hold a genuine interest in signing Martinez this summer, with the World Cup winner valued at €30m (approx. £26.2m).

The report adds that Juve have come up with a plan to secure a major discount on the goalkeeper, by using McKennie as part of the deal.

While Tuttosport do not to provide an explanation as to why Leeds wouldn’t sign the United States international permanently, if they are relegated to the Championship, it seems unlikely that they would pay his £30.2m clause.

Indeed, relegation would greatly reduce the Whites’ spending power in the summer window, and it’s unlikely that McKennie would want to play for a second-tier club, too.

Leeds currently find themselves second-bottom in the Premier League table, so if their form doesn’t improve dramatically soon, Emery may get his chance to bring McKennie to Villa Park.

READ MORE: Tottenham interest in Aston Villa star reinforced with offer mooted ‘in coming weeks’