By Gabriel Agbonlahor

3rd Feb, 2023 | 9:37am

Agbonlahor makes 'huge' Aston Villa late-January signing claim - 'they could have done it'

Gabby Agbonlahor has insisted Aston Villa were right to avoid a late “panic buy” in the January window despite failing to secure a Danny Ings replacement.

The former Villa striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted any new signings must be able to propel the club into European contention in the coming seasons.

As per Birmingham Live (30 January), Unai Emery laid bare his desire to bring in a new striker signing during the January window following the departure of Ings to West Ham.

Jhon Duran, 19, was signed from Chicago Fire during the winter window but Emery shot down suggestions that he was a direct Ings replacement.

Aston Villa failed to add another forward in the final days of the window despite being linked with a cut-price move for prolific Lyon star Moussa Dembele.

Ings was Villa’s top scorer (seven goals) at the time of his departure – with Watkins chipping in with five strikes.

Get Exclusive transfers news at Football Insider's YouTube TV channel

When asked if Emery’s side have been left exposed by not signing a striker, Agbonlahor told Football Insider’s Ewan Kingsbury: “I don’t think they have.

“I’m glad they didn’t go out and panic buy. They could have easily panicked and gone for Dembele, and given him huge money.

“You look at it again in the summer.

“Aston Villa can’t be buying any players now who aren’t good enough to take them into the European places in the future.

“They can’t buy a player who isn’t at the level just because you’ve been left short.

“Watkins is available, Duran is available – Emery has got options.”

In other news, expert claims Aston Villa are “in dreamland” after “brilliant” Diego Carlos update.