Former Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood believes Dean Smith has used the money from the sale of Jack Grealish wisely and can shoot for the stars in the upcoming season.
Grealish was the Villans’ talisman but has now left to join Manchester City. His exit has left the West Midlanders with a void but with plenty of cash to do something about it. And manager Smith has done just that.
So far the former Brentford chief has recruited Emiliano Buendia, Leon Bailey, Danny Ings, Ashley Young and Axel Tuanzebe. The 50-year-old may not be done just yet as Norwich City midfielder Todd Cantwell is thought to be on the radar.
Lens defensive midfielder Cheick Doucoure is another name that has been mentioned in connection with the club. It has been a summer of change at Villa Park.
Sherwood feels they are now on a strong footing and can ruffle a few feathers.
“Obviously got a lot of money there now,” he told talkSPORT, per HITC. “They are looking to strengthen losing Jack Grealish, it might weaken them.
“But I don’t think it’s going to be that bad. It’s not a case of them getting relegated now. I think they are secure in the Premier League and they need to build without him.
“I think the players that they have are going to hit the ground running, aren’t they? You know what to expect.”
Sherwood expects Smith to push for Europe
Villa ended up 11th last season after sitting fifth at the end of December. They were without Grealish for nearly three months due to his foot injury.
He is now gone for good but Sherwood feels that many things point to good times ahead for the men in claret and blue.
“The next step for Villa is trying to edge their way towards Europe,” he added. “I don’t think they are going to challenge for the Champions League but try to get to the Europa League.
“Relegation is out of the question for them. They are too strong for that. I think the manager is too good for that and the fans are magnificent.”
Villa kick off their Premier League campaign with a trip to Vicarage Road to face Watford on Saturday. Games against Newcastle and Brentford follow as the fixture computer has eased them nicely into 2021-2022.