By Graham Hill
DID Aston Villa really have a £17million player on their hands in the shape of Jordan Veretout?
Because that is what the 26-year-old Frenchman is valued at as he prepared to join Carlo Ancelotti at Serie A high fliers Napoli.
According to Italian newspaper Il Matino, midfielder Veretout is leaving Fiorentina and joining Napoli in a deal worth £17.1millon.
This is the same player who was signed by Tim Sherwood four years ago for £8million from Nantes.
Sherwood said at the time: “I know Veretout is very highly rated over in France.”
And Veretout turned down the chance to sign for Leicester that summer.
It was not the wisest choice as Villa had one of the worst seasons in their history and were relegated while Leicester famously went on to win the title.
Veretout’s reputation tanked as he was thrown in among a group of players who massively underperformed that season.
He actually provided five assists that season but it did little to raise his profile.
Only in the last year have we seen signs of Villa making a recovery from that disaster of a season.
Veretout left Villa for a loan spell at St Etienne in 2016 before signing for Fiorentina a year later.
From that deal, Villa are believed to have recouped £6million – but now his value has almost trebled in two years!