You can almost smell the grass at Villa Park now as we prepare for the 2018/19 Championship campaign.
Yes, we have grass, things have improved people! Despite that improvement though Jack Grealish to Tottenham Hotspur speculation lingers on and more recently we’ve even had Chelsea come into the mix, even if that was more of a reaction to our apparent interest in Tammy Abrahams – it opens up speculation about a cash + player deal after all and adds a nice twist to things.
With our takeover leading Bruce to comment that nobody was now available ‘on the cheap’, debate still continues as to our 22-year-old’s true value given his potential, the current market and the nearest sort of deals you can lean on as a comparison – James Maddison’s switch to Leicester from Norwich seems to be the favourite. In any event, it doesn’t look like these rumours will disappear anytime soon as Sky Sports quote manager Steve Bruce as saying that Spurs are ‘nowhere near’ our valuation of him as things stand.
He does, however, qualify that by saying there have been discussions as to a value, but to his knowledge, Tottenham haven’t laid down a firm bid that we could even reject yet. “I don’t think we’ve had a formal bid. There have been discussions and that’s been going on all summer. The one thing the owners have made pretty clear is that no-one is for sale. We don’t want to lose our best players, but they’re aware of course that everyone has their price.
The best thing the owners have been able to do is not let anybody go on the cheap. So if someone wants to buy our players, they’re going to have to find a premium and make sure the owners are comfortable with it.” Adding. “We all know what football is, but at the moment Spurs haven’t got anywhere near what the owners want to consider – so there’s not a discussion to be had at the moment, because they’ve not got anywhere near the figure they demand.” It doesn’t mean Spurs won’t ultimately reach our price, as clearly they must know what we want to do a deal if talks have been ongoing ‘all summer’ but at least our standpoint is now right and we have some strength to the negotiations. As if Bruce’s words are true, we can hold off for a while on what seems to be the inevitable meltdown when he’s sold.