What you need to know about Aston Villa’s 12 new signings, including Marvelous Nakamba and Wesley Moraes

2 Aug

Aston Villa have been very busy in the transfer market this summer as they prepare for life back in the Premier League.

The club’s board have made TWELVE signings in the current window – one of their latest the acquisitions being goalkeeper Tom Heaton from Burnley.

Heaton joins Villa for a fee believed to be in the region of £8million
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They’ve also completed a deal for Marvelous Nakamba, who impressed the Villans enough while on Africa Cup of Nations duty with Zimbabwe.

Given manager Dean Smith has signed an entire starting XIs worth of players this summer – and one extra. It’s understandable if fans may not be fully aware of their new signings.

Below you can see a comprehensive list of Aston Villa’s summer signings and some information about them all.


Tom Heaton

The keeper joins from Burnley for a fee believed to be in the region of £8million.

Heaton, 33, was in the final year of his contract at Turf Moor but has now gone to Villa Park. He started his playing career at Manchester United.

Heaton joined Aston Villa in an £8m deal after six years with Burnley
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Marvelous Nakamba

The central midfielder has joined from Belgian side Club Brugge for a fee of around £11m.

Nakamba, 25, represented Zimbabwe at the Africa Cup of Nations in the summer but they finished bottom of their group.

Wesley Moraes

The striker has been Villa’s largest investment in this window so far, having forked out £22m for his services.

Like Nakamba, Brazilian Wesley signed from Club Brugge where he scored 14 goals in 46 appearances last term.

Wesley has scored two goals in three pre-season matches for his new club
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Tyrone Mings

Villa secured the permanent signing of defender Mings from Bournemouth this summer for just over £20m.

His signature was a must as the centre-back played a pivotal role in helping Villa’s promotion charge during the second half of 2018/19.

Douglas Luiz

The 21-year-old arrives with some pedigree having been bought from Manchester City for around £15m.

He’s also made appearances for Brazil at Under-20 and Under-23 level.

However, midfielder Luiz is still relatively unproven at senior level but has played in LaLiga for Girona.

Douglas Luiz jumps over Real Madrid star Casemiro while playing for Girona
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Matt Targett

The left-back looked like he was going to be a future star at Southampton when he broke into the first-team in September 2014.

Things didn’t work out for Targett at St Mary’s so Villa have taken a chance on him, paying Saints £14million for him.

Targett is hoping to kick start his senior career at Villa
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Ezri Konsa

He may struggle for first-team football next season but signing Konsa may be a smart investment for the future.

The centre-back, 21, performed well for Brentford last season in the Championship and Villa have given him a route into the top flight.

Trezeguet

This is a potentially very exciting transfer for Villa with Trezeguet bolstering their attacking options.

The Egyptian plays his international football alongside Liverpool star Mohamed Salah and started all four of the Pharaohs’ matches at AFCON 2019.

Anwar El Ghazi

Another player who was on loan at Villa last season, El Ghazi made his transfer from Lille permanent earlier this summer for £8m.

The winger helped Villa achieve promotion and scored the first goal of their play-off final victory over Derby County at Wembley.

El Ghazi celebrates Villa’s promotion via the play-offs in May
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Bjorn Engels

Villa certainly have a lot of competition for presumably two centre-back slots and another defender they’ve brought in is Belgian Engels.

Engels was signed for £7.2million from French club Reims.

Jota

They must think highly of Jota if they were willing to make an offer to local rivals Birmingham for his services.

The right-winger scored three goals and supplied nine assists in 40 Championship appearances last term but should have more of an impact with better players around him.

Birmingham City star man Jota made the switch to bitter rivals, and newly promoted, Aston Villa
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Kortney Hause

Villa have also bought a player from rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers in the form of defender Hause for £3m.

The 24-year-old usually plays as a centre-back but can play out on the left which could help him make more appearances in the first-team.

Hause in pre-season action
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Premier League fantasy football tips: 10 bargain defenders you should sign for your Dream Team

19 Jul

The Premier League is back and you cans still sign up to Dream Team fantasy football here.

Pick your best XI using your £50million budget and pick a hilarious name and then own your mates.

It’s fine picking up expensive star men like Mohamed Salah and Harry Kane – but you might need the odd cheap player so you don’t go over your limit.

Some coaches can find it tricky discovering the best bargains, but never fear, we’re here to help you and have done the research on some of the perfect players for you to pick up once you’ve signed up.

So which defenders should you be looking at if you need to save some pennies? Find out our top Dream Team tips below.



Matt Targett (Aston Villa) – £1.5m

Having never had a full season as a starting player, Targett has joined the Villans for £15m.

However, he did get three assists and a goal last term as he made 16 appearances for Saints, which isn’t too shabby.

Targett is set to play a major role for Dean Smith and he could offer cheap points.

Targett has moved on from Southampton and could kick-start his career
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Lewis Dunk (Brighton) – £2.0m

A move to Leicester City appears to be in the works if Harry Maguire joins Manchester United this summer.

Dunk is good for a few goals a season, while last year was the first time he hasn’t averaged more than 7/10 on WhoScored.

Playing for a bigger club is also likely to see an increase in clean sheets – the Foxes got 10 compared to Brighton’s seven in 2018/19.

Dunk is a vital part of the Seagulls’ squad and has formed an excellent partnership with Shane Duffy
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Luke Shaw (Manchester United) – £2.5m

The Red Devils’ standing may have fallen and the ex-Saint might not quite have fulfilled the potential he once showed – but he’s a bargain on Dream Team.

If he remains fit all season he should improve on the one goal and four assists he got last-term.

He also got 14 WhoScored ratings of 7/10 or more, which will come in handy.

Luke Shaw won Manchester United’s Players’ Player of the Year and the Sir Matt Busby Fans’ Player of the Year awards in 2018/19
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Ben Godfrey (Norwich City) – £1.0m

With four goals and two assists in just 31 Championship appearances from centre-back, Godfrey is a possible gem.

Yan Valery (Southampton) – £1.5m

French youngster Valery is on course to be Saints’ starting right-back this season and is very capable of getting goals and assists.

His number of clean sheets is likely to improve too as Ralph Hasenhuttl improves his squad.

If you’re looking for a Saint to be your saviour and help you perform a mini-league miracle then Valery might be your man.
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Ryan Fredericks (West Ham) – £1.5m

The ex-Tottenham and Fulham right-back really kicked on at the end of last season and if he improves his final ball then he could be a huge winner for your XI.

Ryan Fredericks got one over on his former club by helping the Hammers beat Spurs 1-0 towards the end of last season
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Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Arsenal) – £1.5m

Want an early season bargain? With Hector Bellerin still out injured it’s likely the Englishman will occupy the right-back role for a while.

Last season he ended up as one of the top 100 point-scorers in Dream Team, earning 46 points through his his WhoScored ratings alone.

If the Gunners improve defensively he’ll lose nowhere near the 20 he did last term and will be a valuable asset in the opening stages.

Maitland-Niles established himself as a valuable squad member under Unai Emery in 2018/19
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Ryan Bertrand (Southampton) – £2.0m

The ex-Chelsea left-back didn’t have the best of campaigns last year but Ralph Hasenhuttl looks to be turning Saints around.

With a new attack to feed, we could see a far more productive Dream Team player, especially with new signing Moussa Djenepo ahead of him.

Bertrand may enjoy a return to form in 2019/20
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Patrick van Aanholt (Crystal Palace) – £2.5m

He’s not the most consistent man in the world but he now has Tyrick Mitchell snapping at his heels so he needs to up his game.

Usually good for a few attacking contributions every season, if Palace land a goalscorer he could up his point-scoring ability.

Patrick van Aanholt was part of Chelsea’s academy and currently stars for Palace
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Victor Lindelof (Manchester United) – £2.0m

Having a Red Devils centre-back isn’t the most desirable option right now but he’s more than capable of scoring points.

Just small improvements – hopefully thanks to a full pre-season with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – should mean United run a tighter ship at the back.

The possible arrival of Harry Maguire from Leicester City could help Lindelof too.

This will see an increase in Lindelof’s scoring for sure and may well make him a bargain if he gets enough clean sheets.

Lindelof will be key for the Red Devils even if Harry Maguire joins
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You can sign up here for Dream Team Fantasy Football

Premier League fantasy football tips: 25 Bargains to sign for your Dream Team XI

17 Jul

The Premier League is back and so is Dream Team – sign up here for free!

It’s the fantasy football game you’ve all know and love with a prize pot of £100,000!

Who will you pick for your Dream Team?

You’ve got a £50million budget to spend on your XI and just three transfers a month to test your managerial skills to the max.

It’s easy enough picking star men like Mohamed Salah and Harry Kane but you will need some bargains to ensure you don’t spend too much.

Whether they’re cheap and cheerful first-team fillers or smart deals for a diminished dime, here at talkSPORT.com we’ve taken a look at the players you should be signing.

Get our top Dream Team bargain tips below and SIGN UP HERE.

Goalkeepers

Lukasz Fabianski (West Ham United) – £2.5m

Only one shot-stopper averaged over 7/10 on WhoScored.com, and that was Polish ace Fabianski.

He might not get heaps of clean sheets, although this could improve with additions to the Hammers, squad but he’s a steady point-scorer.

Rui Patricio (Wolves) – £2.0m

The Portugal international had a fine first season in the Premier League and should do well again under Nuno Espirito Santo.

Signing Patricio last summer was a huge coup for Wolves
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Ralf Fahrmann (Norwich City) – £1.0m

Landing a goalkeeper on loan with eight Bundesliga seasons under their belt is impressive for a newly-promoted side.
Sure, he was displaced at Schalke last season by talented youngster Alexander Nübel but he should be a fine performer at a cheap price.

Martin Dubravka (Newcastle United) – £2.0m

The Magpies are facing a tough campaign ahead and if he remains at St James’ Park then the Slovakian is likely to be a key star.

He’s been a fine signing and could almost certainly earn himself a big move if he is on top form again in 2019/20.

Dubravka has been linked with transfers this summer
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Defenders

Matt Targett (Aston Villa) – £1.5m

Having never had a full season as a starting player, Targett has joined the Villans for £15m.

But, he did get three assists and a goal last term as he made 16 appearances for the Saints, which isn’t too shabby.

Targett is set to play a major role for Dean Smith and he could offer cheap points.

Lewis Dunk (Brighton) – £2.0m

A move to Leicester City appears to be in the works if Harry Maguire joins Manchester United this summer.

Dunk is good for a few goals a season, while last year was the first time he hasn’t averaged more than 7/10 on WhoScored.

Playing for a bigger club is also likely to see an increase in clean sheets – the Foxes got 10 compared to Brighton’s seven in 2018/19.

Dunk has been a vital part of the Seagulls’ squad and has formed an excellent partnership with Shane Duffy
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Luke Shaw (Manchester United) – £2.5m

The Red Devils’ standing may have fallen and the ex-Saint might not quite have fulfilled the potential he once showed but he’s a bargain on Dream Team.

If he remains fit all season he should improve on the one goal and four assists he got last-term.

He also got 14 WhoScored ratings of 7/10 or more, which will come in handy.

Ben Godfrey (Norwich City) – £1.0m

With four goals and two assists in just 31 Championship appearances from centre-back, Godfrey is a possible gem.

Yan Valery (Southampton) – £1.5m

French youngster Valery is on course to be the Saints’ starting right-back this season and is very capable of getting goals and assists.

His number of clean sheets is likely to improve too as Ralph Hasenhuttl improves his squad.

If you’re looking for a Saint to be your saviour and help you perform a mini-league miracle then Valery might be your man.
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Ryan Fredericks (West Ham) – £1.5m

The ex-Tottenham and Fulham right-back really kicked on at the end of last season and if he improves his final ball then he could be a huge winner for your XI.

Andy Robertson (Liverpool) – £4.5m

Okay, in comparison to the other men in this list, the Scotsman isn’t a ‘bargain’ but bear in mind he got 11 assists last year.

Teammate Trent Alexander-Arnold got 12 and one goal and is valued at £5m, while Virgil van Dijk is £6m.

Robertson helped Liverpool win the Champions League
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Midfielders

Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) – £2.5m

The English youngster can do it all in the centre of the pitch, creating and scoring, and is vital to Dean Smith’s squad.

If he stays, fit unlike last season, he could pitch up some nice Dream Team points.

A boyhood Villa fan, Grealish will need to continue his fantastic form in the Premier League
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Alireza Jahanbakhsh (Brighton) – £1.0m

He may have been a dud last season after his huge move from AZ Alkmaar but under Graham Potter he may flourish.

Jahanbakhsh got two assists in the Seagulls’ friendly win over FC Liefering and played in the no.10 role too. He’s a wildcard pick.

Christian Pulisic (Chelsea) – £3.0m

Another wildcard, many may steer clear of the new signing but we reckon he’s worth a go.

He grabbed two goals and an assist in his last three games at Borussia Dortmund and hit another three at the Gold Cup.

Pulisic shined for USA in the win over Trinidad & Tobago
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Youri Tielemans (Leicester City) – £2.5m

He starred in the second half of the Foxes 2018/19 campaign and could well pick up where he left off after joining permanently.

There is a risk he could drop off but even so he’s a decent bet for points.

Naby Keita (Liverpool) – £2.5m

Another player who, points-wise, was a bit of a dud, we reckon he could really improve this season.

He may miss a game or two early on but could then really shine in midfielder as he did before he got injured at the end of the 2018/19 season.

Naby Keita has had a slow start to life at Anfield
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Daniel James (Manchester United) – £1.0m

How involved the speedster will be under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is unknown right now.

If we’re honest, though, the price is extremely tempting, even if he’s just a rapid super sub!

Miguel Almiron (Newcastle United) – £2.0m

After impressing with Paraguay at the Copa America, Almiron’s stock is steadily rising.

Magpies fans will be hoping he finally breaks his ducks when it comes to goal contributions and if he does you’ll be laughing to the top of your mini-leagues.

Almiron has caught the eye after starring in the Copa America
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Emil Buendia (Norwich City) – £2.0m

A set-piece taker for the Canaries, we’re tipping the Argentine 22-year-old to make a splash in the Premier League.

Get on board this bargain early.

Moussa Djenepo (Southampton) – £1.0m

In total, the Senegalese youngster got 12 goals and seven assists last season, earning him his Premier League switch from Standard Liege.

The dribbler could be a smart signing for your XI.

Moussa Djenepo has signed a four-year contract with Southampton
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Bernardo Silva (Manchester City) – £4.5m

Like Andy Robertson, Silva is a relative bargain.

When you consider Kevin De Bruyne and Sadio Mane are £6.0m, the Portuguese ace looks decent value.

Forwards

Michy Batshuayi/Tammy Abraham (Chelsea) – £2.0m

It’s best to analyse this as pre-season moves further down the line but whoever looks like getting the staring role is an almost must-have for your XI.

Yes, they have lost Eden Hazard but they still have quality elsewhere to provide them with ammo.

Tammy Abraham was a huge hit on loan at Aston Villa from Chelsea last season
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Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City) – £3.5m

He’s not going to usurp Sergio Aguero any time soon but he will still get plenty of goals.

He got 17 in all competitions last season, not bad going at all.

Marcus Rashford (Manchester United) – £3.5m

The Red Devils could have another tough campaign in the Premier League, or they could bounce back.

If they do the latter then Rashford, their current main striker, is likely to get the goals for them

Rashford has signed a new contract at Man United
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Che Adams (Southampton) – £1.5m

The 23-year-old hit 22 goals and got four assists in the Championship last season.

He really troubled defences in the second tier and you wouldn’t put it past him doing the same in the Premier League too.

Aston Villa transfer news: How the Villans could look next season with record-signing Wesley Moraes, Jack Butland and Leeds star Kalvin Phillips

1 Jul

Aston Villa’s promotion to the Premier League was met with jubilant celebrations and sighs of relief from large sections of the West Midlands.

Dean Smith’s side beat Derby County 2-1 at Wembley to end a three-year exile from the top flight, but the boyhood Villa fan instantly set about building a squad capable of staying up as soon as the champagne had dried off his suit.

Aston Villa are back in the Premier League and looking to stay there
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Villa have already signed Jota from rivals Birmingham City, while Anwar El Ghazi and Kourtney Hause have made their loan moves permanent.

Club-record signing Wesley Moraes is expected to be confirmed on July 1 once work permit issues have been ratified, with the 17-goal striker making his £22million move from Club Brugge official.

Smith is still working hard to bring Tyrone Mings back to the club, with the Daily Express claiming the Villans want to add six more signings to their squad.

Jack Butland of Stoke is an option in goal, with Ethan Ampadu, Leeds star Kalvin Phillips and Brentford winger Said Benrahma also under consideration.

Jack Butland currently plays for Stoke City in the Championship
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With John McGinn and Jack Grealish set to stay after superb seasons in the Championship, Villa could quite easily have a squad capable of challenging for a top half finish in the Premier League.

So how could Smith’s starting XI for next season look? Check it out below.

Last season, Smith alternated between a 4-3-3 formation and a 4-4-1-1, depending on who the opposition was. If, for instance, they were playing a more defensive team at home, Smith would drop Grealish back into midfield alongside McGinn and Glenn Whelan.

This would allow Villa to attack from deep and get their playmakers on the ball to create chances for former loanee Tammy Abraham up front and then supply into the wide areas where the full backs were given license to roam past their inverted wingers.

Kalvin Phillips starred for Leeds in the 2018/19 campaign, with Aston Villa now primed to move for the midfielder
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While Whelan and Neil Taylor performed dutifully last year, the introduction of Phillips into midfield and Matt Targett from Southampton at left-back adds greater mobility to the side.

If, however, they play sides who expect to dominate the ball and will try to pass Villa to death, Smith can implement a 4-4-1-1 formation to solidify his team, with Grealish playing in a more advanced role to feed off scraps from the lone striker.

Dean Smith has a multitude of options ahead of the new season if he gets the signings he wants
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