Smith could sell Bree before transfer window shuts

James Bree could have an uncertain future at Aston Villa after struggling for form and playing time. The 21-year-old has spent two-and-a-half years at Villa Park since his move from Barnsley, making 28 appearances in all competitions, but he may find himself low down the pecking order in 2019/20.

Dean Smith has Frederic Guilbert and Ahmed Elmohamady at right-back and could grant Bree a departure rather than let him sit on the bench or rot in the reserves. The £23k-per-week man has never managed to establish himself in the West Midlands and was loaned out to Ipswich Town last season to get first-team football.

Guilbert was signed in January and immediately loaned back to SM Caen. He impressed in Ligue 1 and has continued such fine form during Villa’s pre-season campaign. Ahmed Elmohamady was a regular for much of the 2018/19 season and was retained by Smith over Alan Hutton. He’s likely to provide backup to Guilbert.

There’s less than a week remaining of the summer transfer window, so Smith doesn’t have a lot of time to find Bree a suitor. The 21-year-old was previously linked with Leeds United but nothing came of the rumours. Time will tell where he ends up next.

Stats from Transfermarkt.