As per reports from Scottish outlet Daily Record, EFL Championship side Aston Villa are interested in signing Hibernian FC’s Scottish midfielder John McGinn.
Villa came ever so close to securing promotion back to the Premier League but faltered at the final step as they were beaten 1-0 by Fulham in the playoff final.
The club are understood to be in a dire situation financially, with the Financial Fair Play sanctions set to kick in, which has prompted the Villains to release several staff members, while a number of players are also rumoured to be on their way out.
However, Villa are understood to be pressing ahead with their recruitment plans and have identified McGinn, who is valued at £5m, as a viable target.
McGinn has been one of the biggest rising stars in Scottish football for the past couple of years. The midfielder led Hibs to the Scottish Championship title in the 2016/17 campaign on the back of several brilliant displays, helping them achieve promotion to the top-flight.
He made 37 appearances in that successful campaign, scoring 5 times and registering 10 assists on his way to being crowned the Scottish Championship Player of the Year for the 2016/17 season.
McGinn continued his rapid rise upon his arrival to the Scottish Premiership last season. He produced a return of 6 goals and 8 assists in 43 appearances across all competitions in the 2017/18 campaign, helping Hibs to a 4th spot finish in the league.
McGinn’s performance in the 2-2 draw against Scottish champions Celtic in the first half of the season was a major highlight of the campaign. His displays in the middle of the park saw him earn a nomination for the Scottish PFA Player of the Year award but he was beaten to it by Celtic captain Scott Brown in the end.
A central midfielder by trade, McGinn is well known for the industry and the work-rate that he brings. The 23-year-old is known to be a strong tackler and is an intelligent footballer, with good reading and anticipation skills.
Technically adept with good energy and stamina, McGinn has made the box-to-box midfielder role his own for Hibs over the past three seasons.
Villa have options in the middle of the park, with the likes of Mile Jedinak, Glenn Whelan, Conor Hourihane and Henri Lansbury.
However, the former two are in the twilight of their careers and could be sold, owing to their wages, with the club looking for a major cutback on the wage bill, which could pave a way for McGinn.
McGinn has proven himself in Scotland, and judging by his performance this past season, seems ready to make the step up to the next level. And he has the capability to make a strong impression at the Villa Park should they sign him.