By Villa News Speaking to Dan Bardell

6th Apr, 2023 | 8:10pm

Aston Villa can complete high calibre transfers with Unai Emery as manager - Sky Sports journalist

We’re delighted to welcome Sky Sports and The Athletic’s Dan Bardell as our exclusive Aston Villa columnist each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the club…

Dan Bardell believes Aston Villa can complete higher calibre transfers this summer with Unai Emery at the helm than would have potentially been possible under previous regimes.

The Spanish manager has weaved his magic since replacing Steven Gerrard as manager in October, registering ten wins from his opening 16 Premier League matches in the Villa Park dugout.

The club’s stellar domestic form has left them hunting European football in the closing stages of the season, currently sitting just two points off Brighton in 6th place.

And speaking exclusively to Villa News, Sky Sports and The Athletic’s Dan Bardell admitted that he thought Emery would be heavily backed in the summer, with the club’s record transfer fee for Emi Buendia definitely in danger of being broken.

“I certainly think Villa will break Emi Buendia’s club record transfer fee this summer,” he said.

“I think Emery will be backed heavily in the summer. There was a reason he was happy to wait and not buy many players in the January transfer window, and so far that’s looking like a really good move from both Emery and Villa.

“In the summer with Emery as manager, I think they will be able to attract a higher-level player than they perhaps could do over the last few years under other managers.

“In fairness, they attracted Boubacar Kamara last summer on a free transfer which has been a really good pick-up, but I feel they can keep looking for these top-quality players this summer.

“Come the summer, I think Emery will be heavily, heavily backed and he will be heavily involved in the players picked to join his project.”

Although Villa have recorded five wins from their last six Premier League matches and are one of the form teams in the league, the first team is in desperate need of replenishment.

Having sanctioned the January exit of Danny Ings to West Ham, as well as loan moves for the likes of Marvelous Nakamba, Frederic Guilbert and Morgan Sanson, Emery’s squad could look rather bare-bones if a couple of ill-timed injuries struck during the season’s run-in.

As such, it has been reported that Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris will offer Emery a sizeable war chest in the summer – with further attacking options and more depth in the midfield looking like the most pressing areas of concern. [Birmingham Mail, 11 March]

In other Aston Villa news, Dan Bardell believes a loanee could consider a Villa Park exit this summer if he isn’t given first-team assurances next season.