Aston Villa are undoubtedly one of the teams under immense pressure in the Sky Bet Championship heading into the 2017/18 campaign, as Steve Bruce is tasked with mounting a promotion challenge and helping the club forget a miserable 12-months that have gone-by.
The previous two transfer windows saw Villa spend big money in a bid to spark a push for promotion in the Championship, however, a far more conservative approach is expected by Bruce this summer, with Villa working on a ‘one in, one out’ policy.
Additions will still be made at Villa Park, as Bruce aims to find the right balance to his squad to compete, and one player who has been linked with a move to Villa is Burton Albion’s Jackson Irvine, who is attracting a lot of interest this summer.
Irvine scored ten goals in the Championship last season, playing a major role within Nigel Clough’s side, as they defied the odds to survive relegation. However, Bruce and Villa should not make a move for the Australian international this summer.
Within his squad, Bruce already possesses great quality to go alongside Irvine’s international teammate, Mile Jedinak in midfield.
Henri Lansbury and Conor Hourihane were both bought during the January transfer window to add an attacking threat to Bruce’s midfield, particularly the latter, who featured as a creative cog for Barnsley and Villa last season.
Hourihane scored six goals and added a further 11 assists for Barnsley during the first-half of last season, which earned him a move to Villa Park in January, and from there, the Irishman was involved in a further four goals.
With Villa already entering the summer cautiously on the transfer front, it would be ridiculous for Bruce to enter a bidding war for the in-demand Irvine, particularly with the quality he already has at his disposal.