Aston Villa: Goncalves could be Emery’s De Bruyne

Aston Villa: Goncalves could be Emery’s De Bruyne

Aston Villa are reportedly edging towards a Liga Portugal gem, as Unai Emery bids to bolster his attack this summer.

The Spaniard will be joined by Monchi as president of football operations, adding a presence of experience in striking strong deals in the transfer window.

Emery has taken Villa to new heights, which Monchi could add to in signing the latest player linked to the club who has emerged as one of the continent’s best performers this season.

What’s the latest on Pedro Goncalves to Aston Villa?

As reported by Portuguese outlet A Bola – relayed by Sport Witness – earlier this week, Aston Villa are continuing their pursuit of Sporting CP attacker Pedro Goncalves.

The report claims that Villa are ‘insisting’ on signing the forward, however, aren’t keen on paying the €80m (£69m) release clause set by the Portuguese giants for their star player.

A Bola suspect that the Midlands club are wanting to pay a fee in the region of €40m (£34m) for the winger, adding that Sporting have ‘no reason’ to negotiate a lower price for their player due to the near sale of Manuel Ugarte to Paris Saint Germain.

What could Pedro Goncalves offer to Aston Villa?

Monchi will have to pull off his first masterclass in order to get Sporting to budge on their price tag for Goncalves, with the winger shaping to be a marquee signing for the Villans if a deal can be reached.

Registering 26 G/A in 33 Liga Portugal appearances for his club this season, the 24-year-old isn’t a player that the Lions are going to see depart without a fight.

Securing an average match rating of 7.51 this campaign, the winger ranked as the club’s second-highest performer in the league as per Sofascore.

The Chaves-born ace could offer an abundance of talent to Emery’s side, who are preparing to challenge in Europe next term after securing a spot in the UEFA Europe Conference League.


The heights reached by the versatile attacker have seen him linked statistically to Premier League ace Kevin De Bruyne, setting the tone for the calibre of player Monchi could deliver to Villa Park.

Hailed as a “superstar” by pundit Jack Collins, Goncalves compares closely to De Bruyne based on their numbers recorded over the past year, with FBref showing the Portuguese star’s influence in the final third.

When comparing the two via FBref, the 24-year-old averages fractionally better than the treble-winning maestro in terms of non-penalty goals, registering 0.30 per 90 to the Belgian’s 0.26.

The 31-year-old crept just ahead in providing successful take-ons, averaging 1.21 to Goncalves’ 1.19 per 90, insinuating the threat that he could pose in the Premier League with consideration of the Manchester City ace’s dominance.

As well as being a threat in front of goal, the Sporting gem is a keen creator too, averaging a huge 2.3 key passes per game, providing the potential to be a diamond asset to the rest of the squad at Villa Park. Indeed, like the City ace, this is a player who is equally good in front of goal as he is creating for others.

As such, Monchi could cement himself as a hero around the Midlands if he can reach an agreement to secure the signature of the 24-year-old, who could thrive under the genius stroke of Emery.


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