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Unai Emery: Mateu Alemany setback will not derail Aston Villa plans

Unai Emery has promised Mateu Alemany’s surprise U-turn won’t knock Villa’s plans for the summer transfer window off course.

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Alemany appeared set to take a senior role in Villa’s recruitment department but is now expected to remain in his current post as Barcelona’s director of football.

His decision is a blow for Emery who was keen to bring his fellow Spaniard on board. For now Villa will push ahead with their plans for the upcoming summer window with sporting director Johan Lange, who was expected to remain regardless of Alemany’s arrival, heading up the recruitment team.

Emery said: “It was two weeks ago we were speaking about the possibility for him (Alemany) to come here.

“It was a positive but, in the end, he’s not coming. We will continue in our project and build up as a club and a team. He (Alemany) is a very good professional with experience. I know him, I sometimes meet with him.

“But we’re focused here with the players we have in front. We will try to analyse someone to help us. But now, Mateu Alemany will stay in Barcelona.”

Barcelona had announced earlier this month Alemany would be leaving to pursue a “new professional project”. Though the 60-year-old had agreed a deal to join Villa in principle, no paperwork was signed.

“What is the reason? I think Barcelona is a very good team,” said Emery.

“We were speaking about the possibility but he decided to continue in Barcelona. He’s very respectful with us and, with his decision, so we are.”