Aston Villa could look to initiate talks with Rangers manager Steven Gerrard in the coming days, according to The Daily Record‘s Keith Jackson.
According to The Daily Mail, the 41-year-old has emerged as Villa’s first-choice option to replace the recently-sacked Dean Smith after impressing with his exploits in Scotland.
Newcastle United had also shown an interest in the Liverpool legend in recent weeks but went on to appoint Eddie Howe instead.
A source told The Daily Record that there is a ‘great deal of mutual respect’ between Steven Gerrard and Aston Villa CEO Christian Purslow, who were at Liverpool at the same time for a couple of years during the former’s playing career.
Villa have not yet sought permission to open talks with their 41-year-old target but ‘that could happen later this week’, with Villa’s shortlist set to be finalised by ‘Wednesday afternoon’ or Thursday.
If Rangers are approached for Gerrard and permission is granted for him to speak to Villa, the question is whether he will be keen to go.
The Daily Mail‘s report claimed that he would certainly be ‘interested’ in learning more about the club’s ‘proposal’ and also alluded to his ‘frustration’ at Rangers’ inability to strengthen their squad to the extent that he would have liked.
Unlike at Newcastle, Gerrard probably wouldn’t fear walking into a relegation battle. Yes, Villa are currently 16th in the Premier League, but their previous boss Smith rightly thought their squad of top-half calibre. Also, the club are not afraid of backing their managers in the transfer market, as seen by some lavish spending in recent years, which Gerrard may view as a welcome contrast to the relative frugality at Ibrox.
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