Aston Villa must look to offload Tom Heaton in the upcoming summer transfer window.
The Athletic claimed that, with Heaton’s deal at Villa Park coming to an end this summer, the goalkeeper will consider leaving Dean Smith’s side for guaranteed first team football elsewhere.
The report added that: “Villa would like to extend his stay as they recognise his qualities and leadership skills. A new contract will be offered to the former England squad regular as the plan is to keep their goalkeeping department strong with three senior pros on board.
“Heaton, however, wants to be someone’s starter and Villa cannot offer him such an assurance — so he will listen to other offers before deciding on his future.”
After Emiliano Martinez’s big-money arrival from Arsenal last summer, it’s been no surprise that Smith has gone with the Argentine as his main man in goal – and with good reason, too.
Martinez has kept an impressive 14 clean sheets in the Premier League alone this season, which ranks him third among all shot-stoppers in the division, and is a real testament to how good he has been for his new club.
It has left Heaton stuck on the sidelines ever since he returned from his long-term knee injury, and he is yet to play a single minute of competitive football for Villa’s first team in 2020/21.
Earning a reported £60,000-a-week, that’s a lot of money to be paying someone who is essentially nothing more than a backup, and it’s the kind of money that Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens won’t be happy at spending on a weekly basis.
Heaton looks unlikely to displace Martinez in between the sticks for Villa any time soon, and it seems the perfect time for all parties involved to go their separate ways this summer.