Steven Gerrard has taken over the reigns at Aston Villa and the new manager has had some positive results. However, Gerrard has even started planning for the club’s summer plans outlining whom he wants and whom to offload. Birmingham Live reports that Aston Villa winger Anwar El Ghazi is the first name on the list of players looking for a summer exit. The Dutchman is currently on loan at Everton as rumors tell Steven Gerrard doesn’t count on him for the future.
Al-Ghazi was loaned to the Merseyside club in the winter transfer market. But the move didn’t go as planned, as the then Toffees manager Rafa Benitez refused to play him against Norwich. However, Benitez was sacked after the game and Frank Lampard was appointed as his replacement. Still no relief for Al-Ghazi who is not enjoying regular playing time under Lampard as well.
Lampard was in a fix when Andros Townsend suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury which ended his season. There was some hope for Al-Ghazi as it was expected Lampard could use Al-Ghazi to fill the void left by Townsend. Yet Al-Ghazi remained down the ranks as Lampard trusted Anthony Gordon on the right flank. As a result, Al-Ghazi who was has made the decision over his future which is neither with Everton nor with Aston Villa.
Aston Villa winger sees no future at the club
It looks evidently that Al-Ghazi is not in the plans of Steven Gerrard. January saw Al-Ghazi become the first casualty of Gerrard’s transfer plans as he was the first player to depart. Though Everton took him, Al-Ghazi has failed to establish himself as a regular player at Goodison Park. Lampard too has handed the Aston Villa winger a mere total of 11 minutes till now.
Frank Lampard didn’t even include Al-Ghazi in Everton’s FA Cup squad as well. The Toffees played against Brentford, Boreham Wood, and Crystal Palace but Lampard was reluctant to give Al-Ghazi a chance in any of these games. Al-Ghazi is now looking for a permanent exit from Aston Villa but the winger has no plans to join Everton. Moreover, neither do Everton finds him as a viable option for a permanent move. The Athletic reported that Rafa Benitez was against Al Ghazi’s permanent signing as well.
But Gerrard looks determined to offload the deadwood of the club, with Al-Ghazi whose dribbling skills were hailed as ‘incredible’ by former Villa manager Dean Smith being one of them. The winger too wants an Aston Villa exit and could push for a move in the summer. Al Ghazi’s Villa contract expires in June 2023 and the club wants to avoid him from leaving for free next year.
Villa demanded a £15 million fee to Everton for Al-Ghazi to which the Toffees refused. Everton rather took him on loan as Lucas Digne made a permanent switch to Villa Park. Moreover, many reports claim that Everton endorsed Al Ghazi’s signing only due to the Lucas Digne deal. Another reason why it increasingly looks that the forward won’t be signing for Lampard’s side in the summer.
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