By Villa News Speaking to Dan Bardell

20th Jul, 2023 | 8:53am

Journalist 'would be shocked' if Jhon Duran remains amid loan speculation and pre-season omission

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

Jhon Durán has been tipped for a loan move this season as he needs more minutes of “proper” football before he is ready for Aston Villa first-team action, according to Dan Bardell.

The Colombian joined Villa in January this year for a reported £18million [BBC Sport] after strong performances with MLS side Chicago Fire and has since made 12 appearances in claret and blue, all from the bench for a combined 124 minutes [Transfermarkt].

At just 19 years old, the Colombia international is still inexperienced at the top level, and his omission from Villa’s pre-season matches in the United States hints that a loan move may be on the cards.

Bardell has backed a loan for Durán, claiming that despite looking lively in his Villa cameos first-team football elsewhere is essential if he looks to break into the Villa squad in the future.

Speaking exclusively to Villa News, Bardell said: “Villa have utilised the outgoing loan market really well over the last few years. They’ve had a lot of players go out on loan and a lot of those spells have been really successful. Think of Cameron Archer in the Championship and his two loan spells.

“I think Duran definitely for something. He was a club target for a long time and Emery came in and agreed that we should sign him.

“He had a few games from the bench last season and looked lively. But he needs minutes and isn’t going to be a number one or number two striker, I think Archer and Ollie Watkins are ahead of him in the pecking order, so it makes complete sense for him to spend a season somewhere.

“Villa spent a lot of money on him. He made his international debut for Colombia but if you look at the amount of minutes he’s had in the MLS, he hasn’t played loads of top-level games so I think a loan is the right call.

“I would have been shocked if he started the season at Villa, so hopefully he can get a season playing proper football in a competitive league under his belt and then comes back next and is raring to go and becomes a potential first-team option.

“Obviously, Villa one day plan that he’ll be in the first team because you don’t spend £15million on someone unless you have plans for them. So absolutely sending him out on loan at the moment is the right thing to do.”

In other Aston Villa news, the Villans have been handed a transfer boost after PSG pull out of the race to sign a £109million forward.