According to Sky Sports, Aston Villa have agreed a fee of around £9million to sign Burnley goalkeeper Tom Heaton. The 33-year-old is set for a medical later today ahead of completing the move. He will be Villa’s 12th summer signing. He could also prove to be one of their most crucial, as the Villans do not currently have great goalkeeping options heading into their Premier League return.
Heaton is a steal at £9million
In these days of crazy transfer fees and every player seemingly costing the earth to sign, a fee of £9million for a very solid Premier League goalkeeper is an absolute steal. Any other position on the pitch 33 is relatively old. However, goalkeepers often peak in their early thirties.
The Burnley ‘keeper has certainly come to prominence at a relatively late stage in his career. However, he has been an outstanding performer for the Clarets in recent years. His performances were enough to earn him three England caps.
Too much competition at Burnley
Burnley now have two international goalkeepers in Heaton and former England star Joe Hart, as well as England hopeful Nick Pope. Heaton and Pope have both recently saw their careers hampered by injuries.
Pope is currently a doubt for the start of the Premier League campaign, although he could still recover in time to feature next weekend. Arguably none of the clubs who finished in the Premier League bottom half had anywhere near as goalkeeping options as Sean Dyche’s team.
However, all three players would expect first-team football at most other clubs in the Premier League, except the top-ten sides maybe. Only one can start, which leaves two other good goalkeepers sidelined when all three are fully-fit. None of the trio will be happy sitting on the bench.
It seems that Heaton is the one that the Clarets are willing to sacrifice this summer. His age may be the reason, as could be the fact that Pope impressed prior to picking up an injury. Maybe the Clarets need the funds to start bringing in signings of their own. However, the fee seems like a small one for such an influential player at the Lancashire club.
Villa needed another reliable goalkeeper
The signing of a new goalkeeper this summer was a major priority for Villa boss Dead Smith. The likes of Orjan Nyland, Jed Steer and Lovre Kalinic all played their part in the Villans promotion campaign.
Nyland is highly-rated and the first choice. However, the Norwegian could miss the start of the new campaign due to an injury he picked up in January. Heaton seems like the ideal player to come in, fill in and compete with Nyland for the first-choice goalkeeping spot at Villa.
The Villans are not one of the favourites to suffer relegation next season. However, their first objective ahead of the new campaign will be to avoid the drop and enjoy a solid campaign. Signing Tom Heaton seems like a step in the right direction to avoiding the drop next season, as he would be a good signing for most teams except the leagues top-four.
Will Tom Heaton be a good signing for Aston Villa?