Journalist Ashley Preece has provided an update on Aston Villa’s hopes of signing Liverpool defender Joe Gomez, following recent speculation linking the player to the club.
Responding to fan questions during a Q&A, Birmingham Mail correspondent Preece suggested that while the Midlands side are interested in a deal for the Englishman, any move will likely rest on the player’s own decision.
Asked whether he thought a deal for the 24-year-old could happen, the journalist responded with: “It’s one Villa like. Gerrard really keen on that but it’ll be down to Gomez himself to force a move out of Liverpool this summer. Two years left on his Anfield deal so a decision needs to be made.”
Previous reports have also suggested that the Villa Park outfit are keen on a deal, while pundit Paddy Kenny recently suggested the Merseysiders should cash on the player, with just two years remaining on his current contract.
Villa supporters will likely be praying that manager Steven Gerrard can capitalise on his Anfield connections to tempt the former Charlton man into a move away from his current side, with the club in need of new additions in the centre of defence.
Since taking charge earlier this term, the former Rangers boss has favoured a centre-back pairing of Ezri Konsa and Tyrone Mings, albeit with varying degrees of success, with Gerrard’s men having shipped 46 Premier League goals so far this term – the tenth worst record in the division.
Equally, Mings, in particular, has come under fire from fans and pundits alike, with a poll run by Football FanCast earlier this season resulting in 66% of voters agreeing that the 29-year-old is a liability for the club, while former Leeds United defender Danny Mills recently suggested that the skipper needs to be replaced, as “there always seems to be a mistake in his game somewhere.”
Despite having fallen out of favour under Jurgen Klopp, Gomez – who has made just six Premier League appearances this season, only two of which were starts – is still held in high esteem by those at the top level, with Garth Crooks previously comparing him to England’s World Cup-winning captain, Bobby Moore.
A significant absence due to an injury sustained in November 2020 has hampered his progress since then, although having now returned to full fitness regular game time is surely on the player’s agenda, with reports earlier this season suggesting the player was frustrated that his lack of action could hamper his chances of an international recall.
The 11-time capped colossus has impressed when he has enjoyed a rare league outing this season, however, registering 0.8 tackles per game and winning 60% of his total duels, suggesting that Villa would still be plucking a quality player regardless of his infrequent use.
The London-born star – who has previously been dubbed “sensational” by current boss Klopp – had been pivotal to the Reds’ 2019/20 title-winning campaign, making 28 league appearances as his side surged to a remarkable tally of 99 points.
That season saw the £75k-per-week ace record 12 clean sheets and register 1.4 interceptions and 2.1 clearances per game, forming a formidable partnership with teammate Virgil Van Dijk which left pundit Martin Keown suggesting that the duo could be “as good as anything you’re ever going to see in the in the Premier League.”
With Joel Matip having since usurped his starting berth, however, – as well as summer signing Ibrahima Konate – Gomez is seemingly in need of a new home elsewhere to recapture his form.
Villa’s sporting director Johan Lange simply must pounce to prize the 6 foot 2 brute this summer.