Aston Villa to re-enter race for €20m Milan, Dortmund target

Mohamed Simakan

Aston Villa are set to give chase to young French hopeful Mohamed Simakan of Ligue 1 club Strasbourg in January, reports claim.

The Villains attempted to sign the 20-year-old defender in the summer transfer market but a move failed to materialise.

Now, agent Francesco Di Frisco – who was involved in summer negotiations – has said that Dean Smith and co. are gearing up to launch a bid for the centre-half in the January window.

Simakan is roundly regarded as a hot future prospect having also attracted the attentions of Lyon, AC Milan and Borussia Dortmund during the last transfer period, so says the source.

Di Frisco told Calciomercato: “There were many teams on Simakan: Lyon, Aston Villa and Borussia Dortmund, especially the Germans tried.

“In January, I think these clubs, including Milan, will try to push again. The boy has picked up where he left off, showing his qualities and it is possible that his admirers will also increase.”

West Ham United made a bid for the youngster on deadline day earlier this month but their offer was turned down by Strasbourg after it failed to reach their asking price of €20million (£18million).

This was also the case for AC Milan, who only offered €15million (£13.5million).

Simakan is contracted to his current club until 2023.

Subscribe to TEAMtalk’s daily newsletter…

Other Premier League interest

If Aston Villa are to win the race for the defender, who can also play right back, then they will have to fend off competition from league rivals Burnley.

The Daily Mail reports that the Clarets are preparing a £15million (€16.5million) move for Simakan in the January transfer window.

Furthermore, the source states that Sean Dyche has made him his top defensive target of the winter window after a turbulent and unsuccessful summer transfer window.

The club are reportedly very keen to bring in a centre-back after missing out on Watford’s Craig Dawson who ultimately opted for a loan move to West Ham.