Aston Villa agree Ollie Watkins deal with Brentford ‘worth up to £33m’

Aston Villa have agreed a deal to sign Ollie Watkins from Brentford with a bid worth up to £33m.

The Villans scraped survival in the Premier League last season on the last day.

But that was largely down to the contributions made by club captain Jack Grealish, rather than their goalscoring antics.

They scored 41 in the league last season, beating the drop by one point ahead of Bournemouth.

Dean Smith has been desperate to bolster his attacking force and has eyed Brentford star Watkins.

The 49-year-old knows the former Exeter star well from his time at the Bees and knows about his capabilities.

According to the Telegraph, Villa have agreed an initial £28m deal with Brentford for the 24-year-old.

And that could rise to £33m, subject to certain bonuses being made.

Watkins scored 26 goals in the Championship last season as the London outfit narrowly missed out on promotion after losing to Fulham in the Play-Off final.

Brentford have realised that keeping hold of their biggest players might be a struggle, along with Said Benrahma, David Raya and Rico Henry.

However, getting such a mammoth fee for Watkins will be seen as a masterstroke for the Championship side.

It comes as Smith looks to improve his strikeforce after problems up front all season.

Villa splashed out £22m on Wesley Moraes from Club Brugge last summer but he only scored five times before an injury ruled him out for the season.

In January, Smith signed Mbwana Samatta but the Tanzania international only managed one goal in the Premier League.

Villa are keen on splashing the cash once again this summer after over £100m spent last year.

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Arsenal keeper Emiliano Martinez has been the subject of a £20m bid while Manchester United back-up Sergio Romero is also on their shortlist.

Bournemouth striker Josh King is also being eyed by Smith, who has also attracted attention from the Red Devils.

Liverpool hotshot Rhian Brewster is also on their radar as well as Celtic star Odsonne Edouard.

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