Sport Birmingham leading the race for Villa's Tommy Elphick

23:50  17 july  2017
23:50  17 july  2017 Source:   Read Sport

Villa showing interest in Newcastle United keeper

  Villa showing interest in Newcastle United keeper According to a report in the Birmingham Mail, Aston Villa are keeping a close eye on Newcastle’s Karl Darlow. The Magpie’s keeper is a wanted man, and the club has already rejected a £5 million offer from local rivals Middlesbrough, while Reading are also said to interested in signing the 26-year-old. Darlow came through the Villa Youth Academy, but left at the age of 16 when he was not offered a contract at the club. He subsequently joined Nottingham Forest where he went on to become their first choice goalkeeper. His splendid form during his time at The City Ground led to a move to Newcastle in 2014, and he became their number one last season after a string of costly mistakes from Matz Sels early in the season. He made 36 appearances and kept a very respectable 15 clean sheets. Steve Bruce has made acquiring a new keeper a top priority this transfer window, and although Sam Johnstone remains the most likely keeper to sign, Villa have also made an ambitious approach for Joe Hart, while John Ruddy has also been linked.

Tommy Elphick of Aston Villa before the game. The former Brighton man has been linked to Birmingham City and other clubs in the division are tracking him Elphick leads by keeping the game simple and being an assured passer, while winning knockdowns under pressure in his own box.

Birmingham City are reportedly keen on Aston Villa defender Tommy Elphick . Earlier this week, The Mirror reported that Birmingham City boss Harry Redknapp is lining up a shock raid on city rivals Aston Villa to sign defender Tommy Elphick .

Aston Villa’s arch-rivals Birmingham City are reportedly leading the race to sign centre-back Tommy Elphick, according to the Birmingham Mail.

There is also reported interest from Leeds United as well as relegated Premier League side Sunderland. But it appears that Blues’ boss Harry Redknapp, who has been eyeing the defender for a while, is now in pole position.

Elphick, previously of top-flight side AFC Bournemouth, has fallen out of favour under Villa boss Steve Bruce, despite having begun the 2016/17 campaign as skipper under Roberto Di Matteo.

Stu Forster/Getty Images Sport © Stu Forster/Getty Images Sport Stu Forster/Getty Images Sport

Birmingham are keen to make Elphick their fourth summer signing, following the arrivals of goalkeeper David Stockdale, defender Marc Roberts and midfielder  Cheikh N’Doye at St Andrew’s.

Villa agree to sell Amavi to La Liga side

  Villa agree to sell Amavi to La Liga side The Birmingham Mail have revealed that Aston Villa have announced the transfer of Jordan Amavi to Spanish side Sevvilla, subject to the French international passing a medical. The two clubs have been negotiating for the last week, and they have finally agreed on a deal for the 23-year old defender. As a result, Amavi will now leave Villa’s training camp in Portugal and fly to Spain, where he will complete his medical before signing a five-year contract. It is understood that the La Liga side will pay Villa £8 million for his services. Amavi arrived at Villa Park two years ago for a fee of £8 million. The Frenchman settled in well and the Villa Park faithful liked what they were seeing, but he ended up missing a considerable chunk of the season after he picked up a serious knee injury while away on international duty with the France U21s team. Since his return from his injury, he has not shown the talent that he showcased when he first arrived, and he had a pretty torrid time at left-back last season. As a result, many Villa fans won’t be sad to see him go, but will be happy that the club managed to recuperate what they paid for him.

Aston Villa announce signing on Bournemouth defender Tommy Elphick . Villa revealed on their official website that Elphick had completed a medical on Monday after cutting short his honeymoon to make the move to Birmingham .

BIRMINGHAM , ENGLAND - DECEMBER 16: Tommy Elphick of Aston Villa in action during an Aston Villa training session at the club' s training ground at Bodymoor Heath on December 16, 2016 in Birmingham , England.

Steve Bruce is reportedly eyeing a deal for former QPR defender Chris Samba, in which he will use the money freed up by Elphick’s departure. The Congolese centre-back has been training with Aston Villa, and has impressed Bruce and the Villa squad.

Tommy Elphick made 26 appearances for Villa last season, and has two years left on his current deal.

Newcastle United v Aston Villa - Sky Bet Championship © Stu Forster/Getty Images Sport Newcastle United v Aston Villa - Sky Bet Championship

Villa considering swoop for Zambian midfielder .
According to a report in the Birmingham Mail, Aston Villa and Birmingham City are both interested in signing in former Villareal and Atletico Madrid midfielder Gabriel Kunda Jr. The 24-year-old Zambian can play in the center of the park as well as in a more attacking role on the right-hand side. Injuries and disciplinary issues prevented him from prospering at Atletico Madrid, and a promising spell at Real Zaragoza saw him given the opportunity to sign for AS Monaco, PSV, and Villareal – he chose the latter. However, he was unable to fulfill his promise at the Spanish club, and he made no appearances for the senior side. He might now be given the opportunity to resurrect his career with a move to Birmingham. He is clearly a talented player, but he needs to sort his attitude out because he is at a time in his career where he needs to be playing regular football. With games coming thick and fast throughout the Championship season, he will be given the chance to show everyone what he is made of.

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