Heaton’s arrival could see Smith sell Kalinic

Tom Heaton has joined Aston Villa from Burnley and will likely be first-choice between the sticks in 2019/20. His arrival won’t be greeted with open arms by every player in the squad, however, as it likely spells the end for Lovre Kalinic. The £50k-per-week goalkeeper is reportedly available for £5m and may have to leave to get first-team football.

Kalinic now has stiff competition from Heaton, Jed Steer and Orjan Nyland after spending the majority of his debut season on the treatment table. The 29-year-old failed to impress when he did feature for Villa too, conceding 15 goals in eight games while keeping just one clean sheet. Kalinic is unlikely to still be at Villa Park when the transfer window shuts.


What club he could join next remains to be seen, however. FC Nantes were linked with the Croatian international in June, but there hasn’t been much interest since. Smith has one week left to sell one of his four first-team goalkeepers and is likely to take a hit on Kalinic. He was signed for £7m in January 2019 and will be allowed to leave for £5m just six months later.

Stats from Transfermarkt.