The transfer window closes in a little over a week and all the talk about who each club will bring in. Some clubs will settle for what they have, some will take a planned approach while there will be those who make so panic transfers due to desperation.
In this article, we are going to take a look at some of the historical deals that Aston Villa have been involved with throughout its history!
The first time Aston Villa caused shock waves in the transfer market was in 1893. The signing of Willie Groves, a Scottish striker from neighbouring club West Bromwich Albion, broke the national transfer record. Groves became the first ever league player to command a fee of just over £100. The following year he helped Villa win one of their league titles!
In the summer of 1997, Villa established a new club record with the £7 million purchase of Stan Collymore from Liverpool. For the Staffordshire-born forward, it was a dream come true. He’d been a Villa fan since childhood and grew up watching the claret and blues from the terraces of Villa Park. However, Collymore and controversy often appeared inseparable, and two years later his Villa career was over.
There have been more arrivals than departures for Villa in recent history but there will be one that goes down in history for many reasons. One of the biggest transfers is when 26-year-old local boy Jack Grealish departed for pastures new. Like Collymore, Grealish has been a life-long Villa fan. As an attacking midfielder he was the star boy for Aston Villa, often hitting the headlines for always playing with his socks rolled down.
In August 2021, Aston Villa agreed to sell their star player to Manchester City. It was 128 years after the historic signing of Willie Groves for £100. Only this time, Grealish became the only player in the history of English football to command a transfer fee of £100 million! Whether football fans are supporting Manchester City or Aston Villa, there are many Premier League football clubs to bet on with football betting at Betuk.com.
Juan Pablo Angel
With Collymore’s departure, Villa’s search for a dynamic striker began in earnest. The club was one of many that spent months tracking the progress of the twenty-five-year-old Colombian forward, Juan Pablo Angel. In December 2000, Villa persuaded River Plate to part with their star striker for a club record of £9.5 million. Angel took some time to adjust to the pace of the Premier League, but his determined efforts and modest personality ensured he became a favourite with the fans. Angel repaid their patience by becoming the club’s top scorer. When he left in 2007, he had made 205 appearances and scored sixty-two times, a ratio of one goal every 3.3 matches.
As transfer fees continued to rise dramatically, Villa kept pace by setting ever higher club records. In September 2020, the latest record-breaking signing was for Ollie Watkins of Brentford. Villa’s final deal of £30.6 million including an initial fee of £28 million. It was a huge investment considering Watkins, aged twenty-five, had never played in the Premier League. However, a month later he scored a hat-trick against Liverpool and became Villa’s top scorer for the season with fourteen goals. Watkins continues to be a versatile forward player for Villa.
In January 2011, Aston Villa signed Darren Bent from Sunderland. The initial deal of £18 million would eventually be worth £24 million, another unprecedented financial outlay for Villa. Twenty-seven-year-old Bent made an immediate impact by scoring in his debut match. Goals came fairly regularly as Bent became the club’s leading scorer. However, his form was affected by a run of injuries, and he was eventually sold to Derby County in 2015.