Aston Villa close to signing Caen’s Frederic Guilbert

According to The Express and Star, Aston Villa are nearing a deal for Caen’s Frederic Guilbert and, should the switch be completed, the Frenchman shall become the Midlands club’s fourth signing of the window – Dean Smith is really making his mark on the squad now.

What’s the word?

Well, The Express and Star reports that Villa will shell out £4.4m for the right-back in a deal that will see him loaned back to his current club until the end of the season.

Having signed Bournemouth’s Tyrone Mings on loan earlier today as per the BBC, Smith’s priority appears to be revamping his defence and it’s no wonder considering the dismal record his backline boasts. Scoring is no problem for the Villans, but they leak far too many and this is what will cost them – if they can address this big problem their chances of promotion look much better.

The Villa Park outfit have also been linked with Chelsea veteran Gary Cahill this month, per The Birmingham Mail, but considering the way Smith is going about business today and his comments earlier this week about his transfer plans, the 33-year-old doesn’t seem to fit the bill – Guilbert does, however.

Who is he?

The 24-year-old has made 19 league appearances for Caen this season chalking up two assists, as per Transfermarkt, and can also be deployed at centre-back – this versatility will be key to the Villa Park outfit in coming seasons; Smith has been forced to shoehorn various players into the heart of defence this season due to injuries and suspensions. Guilbert will provide crucial depth across the defence.

If Villa can pull off a move for the player at the £4.4m price quoted by The Express and Star, they surely stand to complete one of the bargain buys of the window.