Aston Villa could well be plotting a move to bolster their wing options in the near future, with recent reports suggesting that Real Madrid maestro, Eden Hazard, is one of those currently linked with a sensational move back to England.
Despite having overseen a solid summer of recruitment, of which seven new faces entered Villa Park, one area that seems to be underperforming of late is out wide.
This may stem from months of training under Steven Gerrard, who struggled to decide if he wanted width or not from his team.
Leon Bailey, Philippe Coutinho and Emiliano Buendia have combined just three goals this campaign so far.
As per reports in Spain, the Villans have now identified that man Hazard as a potential solution to play the “leading role they need to reinforce the attack”.
The suggestion could be that the Belgium international, who is expected to star for his national team in the upcoming World Cup, could be Unai Emery’s answer to the Neymar deal that he conducted whilst at Paris Saint-Germain.
Signed for a world-record £200m fee, the Brazilian was the marquee signing intended to take the Parisian giants to the next level.
Hazard, were he to be signed, could have a similar impact at Villa, albeit just on the domestic stage for now.
He was predicted to “light up” the division after this trophy, and would gladly oblige with a 16-goal haul the season following. Now, despite his powers having somewhat wilted in Spain, he could make good on that prediction one last time in Qatar as he captains his side.
It, therefore, could make a deal slightly more tenable, despite the apparent gulf between player and club.
This poised return to England could be exactly what he needs to get his career back on track, which should have reached unbelievable heights in the Spanish capital.
It is a move that would carry plenty of risks, but to get a player of his stature, who journalist Uche Amako believed was “genuinely world-class”, to a club like Villa, is surely a no-brainer for Emery.