Gabriel Agbonlahor has insisted a loan move for out-of-favour Aston Villa defender Frederic Guilbert is exactly what he needs at this stage of his career.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley, Villa’s record Premier League goalscorer claimed the 26-year-old is now the third choice right-back at Villa Park.
Football Insider revealed the Midlands giants are set to allow the defender to leave temporarily in the January transfer window.
Dean Smith does not want to lose the Frenchman on a permanent deal and wants him to challenge Matty Cash next season.
Guilbert rejected a move to Championship side Bournemouth last summer and decided to fight for his place at Villa Park.
However, he has not featured in the Premier League with summer signing Cash firmly established as Smith’s first-choice.
In the only game the 23-year-old missed this season, veteran Ahmed Elmohomaddy was given the nod.
And Agbonlahor has claimed that is a big clue that his immediate future may be elsewhere.
He told Football Insider: “You saw when Matty Cash was suspended Elmohamaddy played.
“I think, within himself, he’ll want to go and play some football.
“I think 100 per cent he’ll go out in January and play some football.
“Because that’s what you need to do, you can’t be third choice at this stage in his career.
“So I’m sure if he has to go out, maybe to France, then that is something he does.”
Guilbert moved to Aston Villa from French side Caen in January 2019 and was immediately loaned back to the Ligue 1 side.
He established himself as Smith’s first-choice right-back at the beginning of last season but only made two appearances when the season restarted in June.
In other news, a top pundit has been left drooling over an Aston Villa capture.