Wigan’s contract rebel midfielder Nick Powell is available on a free transfer come June 30th. Regardless of where Aston Villa find themselves, he represents a bargain for the club.
Words by Regan Foy | @FindFoy
Last summer Aston Villa were linked on multiple occasions to Wigan Athletic midfielder Nick Powell, who went on to score against the side at Villa Park in the opening home game of the season after a mistake from Mile Jedinak left Orjan Nyland in no-mans-land.
The former Crewe Alexandra academy graduate has played for the likes of Leicester and Hull City on loan before joining Wigan Athletic on a free transfer in 2016, signing a three-year deal.
That three-year deal expires in just sixty-one days, and would see the midfielder available for a free transfer once more after appearing in over 120 league games for the Latics across two seasons in the Sky Bet Championship and one in Sky Bet League One – where he has managed 29 goals and 14 assists.
The 25-year-old, from Crewe, supposedly met with former Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce on occasions last summer as the boss attempted to bring Powell to Villa Park – but their coveted midfielder, who has been linked with moves to Brighton and Celtic, stayed put at the Latics.
If Aston Villa return to the Premier League this season and beat Derby County in the Play-Off Final, then Powell represents a player who has experienced the top flight, and the robust nature of the English Football League and can added much needed squad depth to the midfield, with the departure of Mile Jedinak, Glenn Whelan and Birkir Bjarnason all expected in the summer.
Whilst the three aforementioned midfielders all have played in defensive-midfield roles for the club, Powell is more of an attack-minded midfielder and would provide much needed cover for Jack Grealish should the talismanic midfielder pick up another injury next season, and then the club can flex their financial muscle in picking up a defensive-midfielder to cover those outgoings.
Should Aston Villa lose to Derby County in the Play-Off final and be resigned to their fourth season in the Sky Bet Championship, Powell presents the best possible option in regards to the clubs issues. Whilst there is no idea what could happen, it is likely the club would receive bids for Jack Grealish and should the midfielder leave, Powell is an attacking-midfielder that would literally cost the club nothing in transfer fees, allowing whatever return was picked up from Grealish to be adequately distributed amongst bulking up the playing squad, or fixing financial fair play issues.
The fact that Nick Powell hasn’t signed a new contract with Wigan yet shows that he is fully aware that he is on the radar of a number of Premier League, Championship and Scottish Premier League clubs – and he will have a number of suitors come June 30th when his contract expires should he not renew.
The Latics will be hard done by to lose a talent like Powell on a free transfer, but Aston Villa would be wise to recruit him regardless of where they find themselves in the 2019/20 season.