The 23-year-old attacking midfielder has also played for La Liga giants Real Madrid and Valencia.
Once tipped as a major star of the future, Canales has represented Spain at Under-16, U17, U18, U19, U20 and U21 level but is yet to earn a senior cap with the national team.
During his time at Madrid he earned Copa del Rey honours in 2011 and only joined Sociedad earlier this year.
Villa have been linked with Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley who is said to be out of favour with new Old Trafford boss Louis van Gaal.
Sky sources have also learned that Villa’s Dutch skipper Ron Vlaar is not leaving the club.