Villa ‘open talks’ with midfielder perpetually linked with Arsenal after surprise Man Utd ‘enquiry’

Jason Soutar
Reported Aston Villa target Houssem Aouar during a match

After failing to sign Houssem Aouar for Arsenal during his spell at the Emirates, Unai Emery is keen to bring the Lyon midfielder to Aston Villa, according to reports.

Aouar is out of contract at the end of the season with a Lyon exit finally looking like it will happen.

The 24-year-old (yes, he is only 24) has been perpetually linked with a move to the Premier League – in particular Arsenal – for years now.

Nottingham Forest emerged as a surprise contender to sign the Frenchman last summer, but once again, he did not leave Lyon.

No deadline day would be complete without an Aouar rumour, and we have got exactly that.

According to Football Insider, Aston Villa have began ‘working on a late deal’ to sign Aouar.

The Villans are said to be negotiating a loan deal for the player, though there is ‘competition from rival clubs’.

Emery had previously sparked an interest in one of his former Arsenal players, Matteo Guendouzi, with Marseille reluctant to sell.

The Spanish head coach has turned his attention to a player who was heavily linked with a move to north London during his time as Gunners boss.

Another club linked with Aouar is surprisingly Manchester United.

According to French outlet Foot Mercato, the Red Devils ‘enquired’ about the availability of the 24-year-old.

United have been actively pursuing midfield reinforcements on deadline day with Christian Eriksen ruled out until late April/early May.

An enquiry is probably as far as this one will go, with United boss Erik ten Hag settling on the loan signing of Bayern Munich midfielder Marcel Sabitzer.

Sky Sports correspondent Dharmesh Sheth has claimed that United were “offered” Aouar, Isco, as well as Atletico Madrid pair Saul Niguez and Yannick Carrasco on deadline day.

Sheth said on Sky Sports News: “United didn’t pursue any of those deals even though they had the opportunity to do that, because Sabitzer was the one that they were interested in and that’s the one that they wanted.”

The Red Devils confirmed on Tuesday that Eriksen would miss a few months of action.

“Christian Eriksen is expected to be out of action for an extended period because of an ankle injury sustained in our FA Cup victory over Reading on Saturday,” a club statement read.

“Our Danish midfielder was withdrawn in the second half of the 3-1 win after being caught by a tackle from Reading striker Andy Carroll.

“While investigations are continuing, initial assessments indicate that Eriksen is likely to be out until late April or early May.”

READ MORE: January Transfer Deadline Day 2023 – follow it live with Football365