Date: 21st December 2018 at 7:00am
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With Aston Villa in recent seasons becoming a hotbed for developing other clubs’ talent or helping them save on their wage bills for seniors who had fallen out of favour and needed game time, head coach Dean Smith has stated our direction has now changed.

Whilst not ruling out any fresh potential loan arrivals in the January window for a short-term gain and benefit, Smith did tell the assembled media as he met with the press ahead of this weekend’s Championship clash against Leeds United, that he was far more interested in developing our own youngsters and building a squad that doesn’t need surgery every summer when they return to their parent clubs.

“We’ve got good loan players here at the moment but I would prefer to develop our own players rather than bringing in loans and improving them for other clubs. That’s just my opinion. We have targets in mind and they will be presented to the powers-that-be.”

With the Lovre Kalinic rumours (supposedly a done deal yesterday but not confirmed at time of writing), the Mail also say that a left-sided defender is a priority as Smith focuses in on key positions only in the New Year.

We finally seem to have a plan and are, shock horror, following it.

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