By Gabriel Agbonlahor

25th Jun, 2021 | 11:57am

Agbonlahor: Aston Villa tipped to sign free agent as deal agreed

Gabby Agbonlahor has tipped Aston Villa to sing an experienced free agent centre-back to be fourth-choice.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, Villa’s record Premier League striker insisted Bjorn Engels will need to be replaced after his exit.

Villa confirmed earlier this week (22 June) the defender had signed for Royal Antwerp after completing a medical.

The Belgian signed for the Midlands outfit in the summer of 2019 and made 17 Premier League appearances in his debut campaign.

However, he has not featured for the club since before top-flight football was forced into a hiatus last March because of lockdown.

He was unable to break back into a defence that matched a club record of 15 Premier League clean sheets last term.

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Tyrone Mings and Ezri Konsa are Dean Smith’s first-choice centre-back pairing while Kortney Hause played seven games last season.

“The centre-backs are all good,” Agbonlahor told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley.

“You’ve got three quality centre-halves. When Hause comes in he’s good, he’s reliable.

“You’ve got three, you probably want one more. It can be a long season sometimes.

“It doesn’t need to be anyone outstanding. Just someone as cover. A more experienced, older defender who’s not going to moan when he’s not playing and can just come in when needed. Someone that fits that bill.

“Maybe a free agent would be perfect to come in as a cover.”

Villa have already added one free agent this summer – Ashley Young after he left Italian champions Inter Milan.

They have also added Norwich City attacker Emiliano Buendia for a club-record fee.

In other news, Jack Grealish will love “big” confirmed Aston Villa transfer news.