By Will Butcher
Aston Villa are allowing US international goalkeeper Brad Guzan to leave on a free transfer to speed up his move to Premier League new-boys Middlesbrough.
The goalkeeper’s first-team position is under threat at Villa Park after the £4.25m signing of former Manchester United goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini, who joined from Hellas Verona earlier this summer.
The Telegraph have reported that Guzan, who started all six of United States’ Copa America 2016 fixtures, is one of the players that Villa officials want to leave in order to trim the wage bill.
Guzan, who has 50 US caps to his name, has 12 months remaining on his Villa Park deal but the report states he can leave for nothing.
It’s a surprising move for the former Chivas USA shot stopper, who is likely to be former Barcelona veteran Victor Valdes’ understudy.
Villa’s previous number one made 171 appearances during his eight-year spell at the Midlands club, with 35 clean sheets.
As well as Gollini, former Chelsea manager Di Matteo has already brought in Bournemouth captain Tommy Elphick at centre-back, and highly-rated Reading midfielder Aaron Tshibola.
In other Aston Villa transfer news, this young star could be joining Premier League big boys Liverpool in an £11million deal.