The transfer window has now closed for this part of the season and the first international break is already in full swing. Evaluating how our transfer window went, it could be viewed by many of our fans as different, with Sherwood failing to sign a recognised striker with Premier League experience after the introduction of Rudy Gestede. Despite this, all other areas in the team seem to have been filled and, with £54 million spent on players this season, our highest ever spend, there is huge pressure on Sherwood to ensure he gets his players working well as a team.
I believe that this transfer window was a positive one for Aston Villa Football Club. Sherwood did what he had to do, which was to get rid of dead wood and replace it with new and exciting talent. Jordan Amavi, Micah Richards and Adama Traoré are my picks to really shine for Aston Villa this season but what should fans expect from the group of players we now have?
Well, given the money spent, fans should expect a very positive campaign. Even so, having acquired thirteen players means that some of the signings were gambles and perhaps not the best players the manager could have got. In a nutshell, Sherwood hasn’t spent more than £10 million on a player, with some of the squad coming in for small fees, so, in my opinion, the rebuilding job hasn’t been completed just yet. This is Aston Villa’s highest spending windows of all time and people might be thinking that we should be up there in the top half of the table as a result but the club has a net spend of £9 million. Benteke, Delph and Vlaar, who represented the spine of the Aston Villa team, have gone so, despite the summer spending, rebuilding the team will take time.
Of course, Sherwood could have spent £54 million on one player, like his counterpart at Manchester City did with Kevin De Bruyne. Unlike City, the Villa squad needed an overhaul and, with key names gone, money had to be spent well in order for Villa to secure safety once more. Many fans believe that we should be aiming higher than survival but, with the number of players coming and going, this Villa team is changing all the time and it won’t be until things settles down that we will see improvement. In the meantime, it will be a case of scrapping to get points as the players gel. This is the pressure that Tim Sherwood has brought upon himself. He could easily have spent the money on one or two quality players but most Villa fans would agree that he needed more than just a few players. In that respect, Sherwood has got it right. In terms of the players he has brought in, I’m hoping we won’t have to question Sherwood’s thinking. He has gambled on unknown players with potential so we can but hope that players like Idrissa Gueye, Jordan Ayew and Jordan Veretout prove to be worth their tranfer fees. If Sherwood’s signings fail then I can’t see him being given the opportunity to spend that sort of money again.
As a Villa fan, I can’t get my hopes up too easily nowadays, as doing so could cause serious heartache. Give this team and Sherwood a couple of months and then we can judge whether or not the money spent on new players has been worth it.