Aston Villa are set to send Frederic Guilbert back to Strasbourg after two sources indicated talks were well underway over the transfer.
Guilbert joined Villa from Caen in 2019 and made 29 appearances in his debut season. However, he did not feature at all last term until being loaned to Strasbourg in January. Now, it seems a return to the French side is on the cards on deadline day.
According to Football Insider, Villa have agreed to lend Guilbert back to Strasbourg. The news is verified by The Athletic, who say a loan move is now expected.
Guilbert played for Villa – and scored – in a Carabao Cup win over Barrow recently. But in the Premier League, Dean Smith prefers to use Matty Cash as his first-choice right-back.
What’s more, Villa have signed Ashley Young and Axel Tuanzebe this summer – two versatile players who can cover in that position.
Therefore, chances are limited for Guilbert and he will be allowed to return to familiar surroundings. The 26-year-old made 14 appearances for them last season and scored one Ligue 1 goal.
With two years left on his contract, Villa will not be selling Guilbert, rather allowing him to move on loan again as the deadline approaches.
It is believed he will return to his home country by close of play on Tuesday.
The Athletic add that Villa are unlikely to make any signings of their own on deadline day. Indeed, they got most of their work done early in the window with the additions of Young, Tuanzebe, Emi Buendia, Leon Bailey and Danny Ings.
Smith will be hoping his new recruits click upon their return from the international break. Villa have just one win from their opening three Premier League games.
Villa move labelled nonsense
One player who will definitely not be arriving at Villa Park is Borussia Dortmund midfielder Axel Witsel.
The experienced midfielder has been touted around some big clubs in the last week with Villa believed to be among his admirers.
Witsel has one year left on his deal with Dortmund. As such, they were understood to be willing to let him go for a small fee as opposed to seeing him leave for free next year.
Italian outlet Tuttosport said Villa were ‘active’ on the 32-year-old. Juventus and Roma were also mentioned in the same manner.
“It’s obvious nonsense,” Maric wrote on Twitter. “I can’t understand how some people are pretending it’s not just to make a headline.”
And when Maric was asked who his source was, the coach posted a photo of himself and Witsel at Dortmund.