Aston Villa reportedly offered Brentford more money for centre-back Chris Mepham than Bournemouth did but still lost out to the Cherries, reports journalist Pete O’Rourke.
Mepham himself was also offered a significantly more lucrative deal with Villa but stuck with Bournemouth in order to work with Eddie Howe.
Villa boss Dean Smith brought Mepham into the Bees’ first-team set-up last season after the 21-year-old had moved through the ranks at Griffin Park but could not arrange a reunion at Villa Park.
The Cherries are believed to have paid an initial £12million for the centre-back’s signature but that could rise depending on player and team performances during the course of his contract.
Goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic and centre-back Kortney Hause are still the only new names to arrive at the West Midland’s club this season as they look to reignite a promotion push.
Currently in 13th place in the Championship table with 28 games played, Villa are seven points behind Derby County who sit in sixth place.
This is obviously a shame for Villa but it is encouraging to see them moving for players like Mepham, which is what they should have been doing in the summer.
It is also encouraging to see a young defender choose a move for reasons other than the money and not being led astray by a selfish agent.
Villa must move onto their new targets as quickly as possible, however.