Assessing Aston Villa's Striking Targets Following Wesley's Season Ending Injury

Aston Villa are a little bit short on striking options at the moment after Brazilian striker Wesley was ruled out for the rest of the season with knee ligament damage. Ouch.

To be fair, the former Club Brugge talisman hadn't exactly lit the Premier League alight with his performances, scoring only five times in 21 games, but it does leave a big gap up front for Dean Smith's side.


Couple this with the fact that they only have Jonathan Kodjia and Keinan Davis in reserve then there is a real problem facing the Villans. With the January window open and more money available to spend, Villa have been linked with strikers left, right and centre as they search for a replacement.

All things being considered, including their relegation battle, we here at 90min have taken into account their options and decided who would be the best to lead the line.

Britt Assombalonga

Britt Assombalonga

Two words for you - Championship footballer. Though it might be quite harsh to say that without giving Assombalonga a chance in the ​Premier League.

However, his record in the England's second tier isn't that good. His best goalscoring season came six years ago with 15 goals in 29 games for Nottingham Forest, and a move to Middlesbrough has seen his career move backward rather than forward. 

Sorry, Britt, but the Premier League is a different beast. ​

Rating: 3/10

Eddie Nketiah

Eddie Nketiah

Nketiah was been recalled by ​Arsenal early from his loan spell at Leeds as he was consistently coming off the bench for Marco Bielsa's side. 

He does have eight goals in eight appearances for England's Under-21s, but would still be a bit of an unknown entity if ​Villa were to take the risk on him. 

There is certainly talent there, with comparisons (early comparisons) being made with Thierry Henry. But with little Premier League experience, could he really fill that void?

Rating: 5/10

Christian Benteke

Christian Benteke

A return could be on the cards for the Belgian. ​Benteke made his name in English football at Villa Park and a return would have a romantic feel to it. 

49 goals in all competitions for Villa secured him a move to ​Liverpool but his career has stalled since then with more yellow cards than goals this season. 

It's a risk. Would he be reinvigorated by the transfer or would he continue to struggle in front of goal?

Rating: 6/10

Jarrod Bowen

Jarrod Bowen

It's almost unbelievable that Bowen hasn't yet been picked up by a Premier League club - he's one of the best players in the Championship and has continually proved his goalscoring prowess.

He scored 14 in his breakthrough season at Hull, and then followed that up with 22 goals in 46 games last season. The 23-year-old has continued that form with 16 goals this campaign, proving himself as one of the best forwards in the country.

If he is able to bag that many at a struggling Championship side, what's to say that he couldn't do it in a struggling ​Premier League side?

Rating: 6.5/10

Jay Rodriguez​

Jay Rodriguez

Rodriguez currently sits behind Chris Wood and Ashley Barnes in the pecking order at ​Burnley, making him a viable option for Villa to purse - on loan or a permanent deal.

He's never quite recovered from a knee injury that he suffered in 2014 but would provide Villa with experience and knowledge of the Premier League.

He has three league goals so far this season coming off the bench, but could easily ​get into double figures if he was given more a chance in a starting XI.

Rating: 7/10

Krzysztof Piątek

Krzysztof Piatek

It is looking ever more likely that ​Piątek will depart ​Milan following Zlatan Ibrahimović's return. 

​Tottenham have reportedly had an offer accepted, but Villa still remain in the fray for the Polish international. Four goals in 18 Serie A games does raise questions about his actual goalscoring ability, however.

Yet, it would be some coup for the Villa Park side if they were to pull it off. He knows how to the lead the line and would suit the style of play that Dean Smith likes to play.

Rating: 7.5/10

Olivier Giroud


It feels like a long time since Olivier Giroud appeared in a Premier League fixture. He's played in five games this season for ​Chelsea and is wanting a move away with Villa being one of the sides are interested.

Again, it seems like they might not be able to pull it off with the former Arsenal man edging closer to a move to Inter Milan.

But with his Premier League experience and his ability to play as a lone striker, it would be a good signing for Dean Smith to make.

Rating: 8/10

Michy Batshuayi

Michy Batshuayi

It's unfortunate that ​Batshuayi has never quite been given the opportunity to prove himself in the Premier League, consistently playing second fiddle at Chelsea.

However, during a loan spell with Crystal Palace, the former Marseille striker showed what he can do when given more game time. 

He bagged five goals in 11 Premier League games for the Eagles aiding them to a 12th place finish. With the talented Jack Grealish feeding him all game long, 'Batsman'​ could become a lethal striker for Aston Villa.

Rating: 9/10

Source : 90min