Aston Villa have reportedly stepped up their interest in landing a struggling AC Milan star who has been told he can leave the club for around £24million this summer.
Unai Emery and Villa President of Football Operations Monchi have had an incredibly impressive summer so far, adding Youri Tielemans, Pau Torres and Moussa Diaby to the first-team squad.
However, it appears that a move for an attacking midfielder is still on the cards, with Milan star Charles De Ketelaere very much on Villa’s radar.
News outlets in Spain claim that Villa have been told the 22-year-old will cost them around €28million (£24m), just a year after he moved to the San Siro for €35m (£30m).
The reports add that the Serie A giants are ready to offload the Belgian, after a difficult first year in Italy following his switch from Club Brugge.
Having previously been labeled a ‘special player’ by talent scout Jacek Kulig, De Ketelaere failed to show his true worth to Milan in his first campaign.
The playmaker scored 14 goals and added seven assists in 33 games for Brugge in the 2021/22 campaign, figures that prompted Milan to strike.
However, that form has not translated to Italy where he only managed a single assist in 32 appearances in Serie A.
De Ketelaere panned in Italian press
Indeed, De Ketelaere was described as ‘awful’ by football blogger Rajath Kumar after a poor performance for Milan last term.
But it appears that Emery and Monchi are still convinced that De Ketelaere can excel in one of the top league’s in European football.
At this stage, there’s been no mention of an official approach being made for the player, although Villa remain firmly in the hunt for new signings ahead of the new season.