Aston Villa target "two or three" more signings with summer spree set to continue
Chief executive Christian Purslow claims Villa are targeting around two or three more signings this summer as he dismissed the notion they risk ‘doing a Fulham’.
Defender Bjorn Engels this week became the club’s eighth signing since winning promotion in May, taking their spending close to the £100million mark.
That was the amount Fulham splashed out 12 months ago, only to be relegated straight back to the Championship.
Yet Purslow believes comparisons between the two clubs are unfair, pointing out Villa had no option but to rebuild, after releasing nine players following their play-off final win at Wembley.
Discussing the club’s transfer strategy with supporters during Villa’s pre-season trip to the USA, Purslow said: “We have signed players who are known, who have been watched and tracked. It is highly strategic. I think that will stand us in good stead.
“Our ambition is to surprise people. Outside of Birmingham there will be people who don’t follow these things closely, who think we are just another promoted team, who will struggle and likely go straight back down.
“No-one, not least me and (boss) Dean Smith, believes that is the case. I could not be more confident in the team. I think we are going to have a fantastic season.”
During a half-hour question-and-answer session with fans, Purslow also lifted the lid on the club’s dire finances 12 months ago.
Saturday marks the one-year anniversary of Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens’ takeover at Villa Park, which came with the club on the brink of administration.
Purslow, who the duo appointed as chief executive last September, explained: “Last July, the club could not make a £4.1million bill to HMRC, we were the very definition of bankrupt.
“If these two (Sawiris and Edens) didn’t put £60m in very quickly, we would have been liquidated. We’d have been Glasgow Rangers, we’d be starting again.
“They funded the whole season when we were losing money throughout. We should be so grateful. The only way is up from here.”