This article is part of Football FanCast’s Opinion series, which provides analysis, insight and opinion on any issue within the beautiful game, from Paul Pogba’s haircuts to League Two relegation battles…
Although Aston Villa’s start to the 2019/20 campaign has seen the newly-promoted side collect just three wins from their first 12 league games, the form of midfielder John McGinn is reportedly attracting the interest of Manchester United.
Since arriving from Hibernian in 2018, McGinn has played a crucial role for Dean Smith’s side, earning both the players and fans’ Player of the Year accolade in their promotion-winning season from the Championship.
Yet whilst the West Midlands outfit will have been pleased with the undeniable impact the Scotsman has had in transforming their domestic fortunes, this has sparked interest from 13-time Premier League champions Manchester United, according to reports from ESPN.
United had expressed an interest in McGinn during the summer transfer window, as reported by The Sun, but the Red Devils could test the resolve of Villa owners Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris with an offer in January.
If the bid matches the £50m fee that was touted in the summer, this would represent a considerable profit for Villa on the £2.7m they shelled out to Hibernian in January 2018, but selling such an important player in Smith’s squad would unquestionably undermine the ambitions that the billionaire duo have – and impact the club’s chances of top flight survival this season.
With United having scored just 16 league goals so far this season – less than Burnley – a move for McGinn would provide attacking impetus to the club’s frontline, the 25-year-old having scored 10 goals whilst registering 11 assists since arriving at Villa Park, but in turn would take away from Villa’s. They’ve only netted once more than United in the top flight, and McGinn is their second-top scorer after summer signing Wesley.
There can be no doubting that the Scotsman possesses the ability and talent to make it at a top-six club, but it is essential that McGinn is retained even if the offers appear tempting to the Villa hierarchy. Losing him mid-season will inevitably reduce the Birmingham outfit’s chances of survival.