Christian Benteke’s wages an issue for Aston Villa
Wages are believed to be the stumbling block over any potential move to bring back Christian Benteke to Villa.
Snapped up from Genk in 2012, Benteke went on to enjoy three successful years at Villa Park which saw him score 49 goals in 101 games.
That form saw him sold to Liverpool for £32.5million before he then moved onto Crystal Palace for £27m.
Currently out of favour at Selhurst Park, it is understood Villa have been offered the chance to re-sign Benteke on loan. But his wages of £125,000-a-week are believed to be the stumbling block with Villa yet to respond to the offer.
Dean Smith, though, is desperate to land a striker with record signing Wesley having been ruled out for the rest of the season. Palace signed Cenk Tosun on loan from Everton earlier this month pushing Benteke further down the pecking order.
And with the price of players tending to drop the closer it gets to deadline day, Villa will be hoping there can be some negotiation when it comes to the wage percentage Palace are demanding for the player.
Meanwhile, Jack Grealish insists the team must bounce back quickly from their humbling defeat by Manchester City – with the captain demanding a response when they take on Brighton this weekend.
“It was obviously a tough game,” Grealish said on the City game. “I think they’re a brilliant side but we were nowhere near good enough.
“We know that as a team, and we spoke about that in the dressing room. They’re an unbelievable team, you’ve just got to look at the players they have in their starting XI and on the bench.
“We have to try and forget about it and go into the game against Brighton with our heads held high.”
He added: “You can’t really do much against Manchester City sometimes.
“But we do feel that, as a team, we could have done much better to keep the scoreline down.
“It’s one of those where we’re going to have to dust ourselves down and go again.”
Meanwhile, Villa last night announced the loan signing of former Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina. The 39-year-old joins from AC Miland until the end of the season.