Villa add their name to growing list of Chelsea prospect’s suitors

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Aston Villa are the latest Premier League club hoping to capitalise on Chelsea’s ambivalence towards promoting young talent from within, by trying to alleviate the Blues of highly-promising striker Patrick Bamford.

The England U21 international is yet to make a senior appearance for Chelsea, but he’s been bathed in limelight this season nonetheless, playing an integral role in Middlesbrough’s Championship promotion push.

Loaned out to the Teessiders for an initial six months at the outset of the season, the 21-year-old centre-forward extended his stay for the remainder of the campaign and has netted 19 goals for Boro.

His 17 league strikes have helped propel Aitor Karanka’s side into third with only a game to go, while his exploits also saw him scoop the Championship Player of the Year award.

Villa boss Tim Sherwood is suitably impressed according to the Daily Mail, who suggests ‘Bam Bam’ is now high on the summer shopping list of the west Midlands club.

The Villans are not alone there, though, with Everton, Crystal Palace and Southampton all thought to have registered interests.

The 13/5 shots to hold the FA Cup aloft are certain to be in the market for forward reinforcements whether or not prize asset Christian Beneteke is prised away.

Villa’s talisman is finishing the season with aplomb after struggling to regain his scoring touch for long periods this term, but while this is great news for the club’s immediate ambitions it has its drawbacks.

This burst of net-rippling activity may have placed the Villans in a cup final and begun steering them away from the danger zone, but the Belgian is also putting himself firmly in the shop window.

On the evidence of his stand-out season, Bamford would be a fine addition at Villa Park.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.