Aston Villa plotting Rangers raid in January, have £20 million to spend on key man

Aston Villa boss Dean Smith is reportedly keen on Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos
Aston Villa boss Dean Smith is reportedly keen on Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos
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Aston Villa could test Rangers' resolve with a bid of £20 million plus for striker Alfredo Morelos in January, according to reports.

The 23-year-old forward, who has earned a recall to the Colombia national squad after hitting 13 goals in 17 games so far this term, is understood to be high on Dean Smith's wishlist - despite the Villans spending close to £150 million on signings during the summer.

Villa are understood to be eyeing up a striker who can compete with Wesley Moraes for a starting berth, and Morelos is thought to be one potential player the club could target.

LA Galaxy ran the rule over the former HJK Helsinki striker in Rangers' 5-0 win over Aberdeen while Morelos has previously been linked with a host of clubs including AC Milan, Crystal Palace, Lille, Marseille, Newcastle and clubs in China.

Speaking as he helped launch the legends match between Rangers and Liverpool, former Ibrox captain Richard Gough confirmed the Galaxy's technical director Jovan Kirovski was at the win over the Dons, and had expressed an interest in Morelos.

Gough explained: "Jovan is a friend of mine and I sat next to him at the game on Saturday.

“He is in Europe to see a number of things at the moment. He was asking me about Alfredo and I told him he’s just a pure goalscorer.

“Jovan said, ‘Yeah, but he looks a touch heavy’, but I told him just to keep watching and he would definitely score. True enough, he scored with a great finish just a few minutes later.

“I’ve been really impressed with him this season. He seems to have calmed down a bit, screwed the nut and realised the ability he has got.

"He seems to be more comfortable within himself and he played very well against Aberdeen.”