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Aston Villa chose not to meet £40m asking price for 22-goal star – A bad choice by Smith?

Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic applauds the fans. (Getty Images)
Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic applauds the fans. (Getty Images)

Why Aston Villa missed a trick by not signing Aleksandar Mitrovic

In January, the Daily Star had claimed that Aston Villa were interested in signing Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic. However, they refused to meet Fulham’s £40m valuation of their star striker and thus, a move didn’t materialise during the January transfer window.

Aleksandar Mitrovic, 25, has been in stunning form for Fulham this season, scoring 22 goals in 31 appearances in the Championship. He has played a key role in helping the Cottagers to third place in the table, with Scott Parker’s men five points off second-placed Leeds United.

Meanwhile, Aston Villa are just a point above the relegation zone and have tasted three consecutive defeats with the latest coming at the hands of Southampton. Dean Smith’s side have done well to reach the Carabao Cup final, where they’ll play Manchester City on Sunday, but as far as their league campaign is concerned, they have utterly disappointed.

Aleksandar Mitrovic celebrates after scoring for Fulham. (Getty Images)
Aleksandar Mitrovic celebrates after scoring for Fulham. (Getty Images)

The Birmingham-based club seem to be struggling to get goals in the top-flight despite making some big signings in the last two windows. They have lacked the quality and experience while moving forward, thus resulting in a poor run of form.

Wesley Moraes has been ruled out for the season with a knee ligament injury, while Jonathan Kodjia was sold to Qatar Stars League side Al-Gharafa SC in the January transfer window.

The Villans did sign Mbwana Samatta from Genk and Borja Baston on a free transfer from Swansea City last month. But Baston’s addition until the end of the season is certainly a big surprise considering his record in English football is simply not good enough. Keeping that in mind, Smith has missed a trick by not signing Aleksandar Mitrovic last month.

Mitrovic cost Fulham £22million back in July 2018 (h/t BBC) and he has proved a revelation for the West Londoners. In 90 appearances for the Cottagers, he has scored 45 goals and is currently the top goalscorer in the Championship. The Serbian international’s goalscoring track record has been impressive this season and he could have helped revive Villa’s attack.

Aston Villa manager Dean Smith all smiles after he guided the club to promotion. (Getty Images)
Aston Villa manager Dean Smith all smiles after he guided the club to promotion. (Getty Images)

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Verdict

The 25-year-old knows what it takes to succeed at the highest level and such know-how could have been benefited Smith’s Villans in their bid to beat the drop. Mitrovic didn’t enjoy much success with Newcastle but he has been fantastic ever since joining Fulham and purely going by his goalscoring record in the last two years, the centre-forward would have been a great acquisition.

Thus, Villa have committed a blunder by not meeting Fulham’s £40m valuation of Mitrovic last month.

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