Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard wants to sign another centre-back, according to The Athletic‘s Gregg Evans.
Villa’s problems are mounting in that position after Ezri Konsa sustained a hip injury in the 2-2 draw with Manchester United on Saturday, with the club still waiting to discover how seriously the 24-year-old was hurt.
It comes after Axel Tuanzebe’s loan in the Midlands was cut short and Manchester United sent him to Serie A outfit Napoli. That leaves Tyrone Mings and Kortney Hause as the only fit senior centre-backs currently available to Gerrard.
Evans reported for The Athletic that centre-back is now ‘a priority position’ with two weeks remaining in the January transfer window, as Gerrard believes he needs four senior players at his disposal in that area.
Villa want to bring in a defender with experience but have yet to decide whether they’ll pursue a short-term deal to tide them over until the summer. Liverpool’s Joe Gomez is one option that they ‘like’, but they have been made aware that he is not available this month.
Sharing a link to his article via Twitter, Evans stated: “Villa are also looking for an experienced defender to add to the squad this month. Gerrard wants four senior CBs.”
If it’s not to be Gomez at this stage, could Villa perhaps look to one of his Liverpool team-mates for a possible centre-back addition?
Alex Crook of talkSPORT told GiveMeSport that the Reds are ‘willing to sell’ Nathaniel Phillips, who would ‘tick a few boxes’ for Villa.
Gerrard, who ranks third in the Merseyside club’s all-time appearances list, may well make use of his ‘connections’ to lure players from Anfield, just as he did at Rangers when bringing the likes of Ryan Kent, Jon Flanagan and Sheyi Ojo to Ibrox.
The £7.2m-rated Phillips, who was nominated for the club’s Player of the Match award following a 2-1 win over AC Milan last month, could compete for a starting place at Villa Park rather than merely providing cover, having already proven himself at Premier League and Champions League level.
If Gomez is unattainable, his Anfield team-mate could well be worth trying for Villa to solve their central defensive need.
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