Aston Villa should sign Norwich City playmaker Emi Buendia in the summer no matter the fee, according to former midfielder Lee Hendrie.
The Canaries moved one step closer to the Championship title and promotion back to the Premier League by beating Derby County on Saturday.
Buendia has been key to their title charge – scoring 12 times and adding 16 assists as he’s helped Daniel Farke’s side move eight points clear at the top.
It seems the 24-year-old has turned heads in the Premier League, with Arsenal and Liverpool among the sides linked, but Hendrie has called for his former club to land the Argentine in the upcoming window.
Speaking to Transfer Tavern, the 43-year-old suggested it’s a move Villa should be making no matter the fee.
He said: “I would buy him without a shadow of a doubt.
“I mean, I know they talked about buying [Ross] Barkley, but Buendia, I would definitely, I mean I don’t know what sort of fee Norwich would be looking for for him, but I would certainly pay that fee. I think he’s an outstanding player.”
Sources exclusively informed Football League World last month that it would cost more than £30 million for a side to prize the Argentine playmaker away from Norwich in the summer window.
That’s a lot of money to spend on a player coming out of the Championship but in Ollie Watkins, Villa have seen firsthand just how successful buying players from the second tier can be.
Can you remember how many league goals each of Aston Villa’s last 15 top goalscorers scored?
Buendia has been simply sensational this term and it looks as though it’s going to be very difficult for Norwich to keep hold of him in the summer.
The playmaker has been linked with a number of Premier League clubs but it could be an excellent bit of business if Villa are able to win the race for him.
The thought of Buendia playing alongside Jack Grealish is surely a mouthwatering prosposition for fans of the Midlands club but it is unlikely to be cheap for them to make that happen.
Given the stature of some of the clubs linked, Villa may have to prepare themselves for a bidding war.