Aston Villa are preparing to make an offer to Watford for winger Ismaila Sarr, who could be their replacement for Jack Grealish, according to reports.
Villa transfer news at present is dominated by the future of captain Grealish. Manchester City have made a £100m offer for the playmaker’s services. Villa do not want to lose their talisman, but they could reinvest that money on several signings of their own.
Finding a replacement for Grealish will be a priority if he does complete a Premier League record move to the champions. His assists, goals and creativity are a vital part of Villa’s play.
They have already signed Emiliano Buendia from Norwich City in a club-record transfer. The intention was for him to play alongside Grealish rather than replace him, though. Therefore, they continue to look for additional options.
Villa were intent on signing Emile Smith Rowe earlier in the summer, but he signed a new contract with Arsenal instead. The Midlands club have since turned their attention to other players, such as Leon Bailey, for whom they have reached an agreement with Bayer Leverkusen.
They may not be done there, either, with rumours about Todd Cantwell lingering as part of another Norwich raid. Now, it seems they have their eyes on another promoted talent.
According to Homme du Match, Villa are ready to make a move for Watford’s Sarr, who scored five goals in his debut Premier League season and then 13 last term to help his side back up from the Championship.
Sarr will get another shot at Premier League football this season, but it may not be with Watford. He has already been linked with Liverpool, but Villa may be able to offer him more regular gametime.
The French report claims they are ready to make an offer of €33m (around £28m) imminently. It will give Watford something to consider, even though they have the Senegal international under contract until 2024.
Sarr, 23, has a bright future ahead of him and this could be an exciting year for his development. As things stand, he will begin it at Vicarage Road, but there remains a chance he could head to Villa Park instead.
Villa make bid for Euros star
Yet another winger to be linked with Villa in the potential post-Grealish world is Mikkel Damsgaard of Sampdoria.
Damsgaard, 21, joined Sampdoria from Danish club Nordsjaelland last summer. He enjoyed a solid campaign, with 18 starts among 35 Serie A outings as I Blucerchiati finished ninth.
But it was at this summer’s European Championship that he really jumped to the attention. The talented wide man scored in Denmark’s 4-1 group victory over Russia. And he bagged the opener with a stunning free-kick as the Danes lost out 2-1 to England in the semi-finals.
Unsurprisingly, a few clubs have already made enquiries, with Leeds United and Tottenham mentioned in connection with the player.
The asking price for the Scandinavian was initially €25m. That then increased to €30m and now it seems any suitor will need to part with €35m. And it appears Villa are willing to do that.
ClubDoria46 have reported that Sampdoria are expecting a ‘maxi offer’ from Villa. The report added that the offer has been written down and they have ‘sealed the envelope’.
All that remains is for club officials to deliver it to the Genoa-based outfit. The Italians see Damsgaard’s exit as a ‘necessary sacrifice’, with money tight at the club.