ASTON VILLA boss Dean Smith could yet add another new face to his ranks with free agent Daniel Sturridge still available – even though the transfer window is now closed.
The 29-year-old striker was released by Liverpool at the end of last season after his contract had ended and has not been snapped up by anybody else.
Just days before leaving the club he watched on as Jurgen Klopp’s men beat Tottenham in the Champions League final in Madrid.
Sturridge’s career has been hampered by injury but he is a lethal finisher when fit.
And while the transfer window has now slammed shut, Premier League clubs can still sign free agents if they still have room in their squads.
All 20 Premier League sees have to announce their 25-man squads by 5pm on Friday, meaning there is still time to bring in Sturridge should Smith want him.
Within that 25, eight must be homegrown, and clubs are only permitted to select a maximum of 17 foreign players.
Villa have brought in 12 new signings this summer, with the likes of Wesley, Tom Heaton, and Tyrone Mings all joining.
Only Manchester United spent more than Aston Villa’s £134m and fans are excited about the newly-promoted club’s prospects this season.
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Out of all the new signings though, arguably only Heaton has any substantial Premier League experience, so bringing in Sturridge could be a useful option for Smith.
The former England international netted 67 goals in 160 games for Liverpool and has also scored goals with Chelsea and Manchester City in the top flight.
Born in Birmingham, Sturridge spent four years at the Villa academy before leaving for Coventry aged 13.
Speaking after the transfer deadline, Smith spoke out about Villa’s overall business this summer and insisted that he was happy.
“I think the important thing is we have kept the core of the team,” said Smith.
“The heartbeat is still in that dressing room. People who know how the owners want Aston Villa to be seen. I always believe when somebody comes into this club – and I say this to the players – they should feel it, hear it and see it.
“I want that to be the case so when they leave they think: ‘That place is on the up’. The culture of that place is a winning culture of improvement and development.
“We are happy with the signings we have brought in and the recruitment policy we adopted.”