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Aston Villa given £50m transfer budget as Steven Gerrard makes two-man midfield shortlist
Aston Villa are ready to launch a summer bid to land Leicester midfielder Wilfred Ndidi.Villa boss Steven Gerrard’s number one target is getting a high-quality defensive midfielder into the club.And he’ll have £50m at his disposal to get the man he wants.Brighton’s Yves Bissouma and Ndidi are top of his list and he’s desperate to land one of them.Villa have already failed in one bid to get Mali international Bissouma from The Seagulls.They submitted a formal £30m offer for the 25-year-old last month but hit a brick wall.Bissouma has 18 months left on his contract but with Arsenal, Manchester United and Newcastle also showing interest, Brighton could wait for a bidding war to start to get nearer their £45m valuation.Gerrard has already indicated that he’s prepared to revisit that in the summer, saying: "We put in a bid for Bissouma which was turned away, and we respected it."If a move is not right then we might have to be patient and that’s where we are right now.”But he also has Ndidi right up at the top of his wish list as he prepares for his first summer transfer window at the club since making the move south from Rangers.Nigerian international Ndidi signed a bumper six-year deal at Leicester in 2018 which ties him to the club until the summer of 2024.Foxes boss Brendan Rodgers would actively resist any moves for the player but knows The Foxes could be prone to a big enough offer.Villa’s ambitious board have already shown they are prepared to back Gerrard by sanctioning the £25m arrival of Lucas Digne and the sensational loan deal which brought Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona.And he’ll have a big summer war chest regardless of whether they decide to cash in on midfielders John McGinn and Douglas Luiz.Scotland