By Tom Blackburn
Aston Villa will attempt to fend off a bid for Jordan Ayew from rivals West Brom, according to a report.
Midlands publication Express & Star claims that West Brom are to step up their summer activity this week with a swoop for striker Ayew.
It is said that the Baggies face resistance from Villa, who do not want to lose Ayew.
The report states that Villa have rejected an £8million bid for the striker already this summer from Hamburg, and that West Ham are also eyeing up a deal.
The Villa hierarchy, led by owner Tony Xia, have claimed they will not cash in on Aye, who has four years still remaining on the five-year contract he signed in July last year.
But it appears they will now face concerted pressure from their Midlands rivals for one of their prize assets.
The former Marseille striker scored seven times in 36 appearances last season to finish as the clubs leading goalscorer, but was ineffective as Villa lost their Championship opener to Fulham last Friday.
Ayew, who has scored 12 goals for his country in 37 caps, and scored three goals in two games during pre-season.
At the end of July, L’Equipe reported that the 24-year-old is also a target of French side Lorient and that striker Ayew wants to leave the Championship outfit.
It is likely that former Chelsea manager Di Matteo will only allow his striker to leave if they can recoup almost all of the £9million Tim Sherwood paid for him last summer.
In other Aston Villa transfer news, they make an approach for Premier League 27-year-old .