By Wayne Veysey

4th Jan, 2017 | 5:51pm

Aston Villa to seal £3m signing of midfield goal machine - reliable journalist

By Harry Sykes

Aston Villa are in line to seal the £3million signing of Nottingham Forest playmaker Henri Lansbury, according to a reliable journalist.

The midfield goal machine has been linked with a January departure from the City Ground amid interest from a number of top flight and Championship clubs.

Now the Guardian’s deputy news editor Ed Aarons has claimed that Villa are in pole position to land the Arsenal academy product this month.

Aarons, who is one of the national newspaper’s transfer experts, made the revelation on his personal Twitter account on Wednesday evening Villa are “expected” to sign Lansbury for £3million from the Championship rivals.

Forest are vulnerable to losing Lansbury because he is out of contract at the end of the season, when he could leave on a free transfer.

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The 26-year-old has been the east Midlands club’s outstanding player this season, scoring six goals and supplying three assists in 17 league appearances.

The playmaker has been sorely missed during the club’s last six matches in which he has been unavailable due to a hamstring problem and they have accumulated just a single point.

Forest have been drawn into the relegation scrap during his absence, with just a two-point cushion now above the drop zone.

Lansbury is well recognised for his goalscoring talents, netting 33 goals in 150 Forest appearances, a superb strike rate for a midfielder, as well as supplying 20 assists.

Villa are heading in a different direction in the Championship table and Steve Bruce’s side are hoping to reach the play-off places by the end of the season.

The Midlands giants have managed to recover from a poor start under ex-manager Roberto Di Matteo, but still face a tough task to reach the play-offs.

They are currently 12th in the Championship table and seven points adrift of sixth-placed Sheffield Wednesday.

Football Insider verdict:

Lansbury will be just the ticket for Forest. He offers something they do not currently have, which is goals from midfield and the vision and passing range to get the ball to the likes of Jonathan Kodjia, Albert Adomah and Jack Grealish. The 26-year-old Lansbury is a mature figure who has overcome the growing pains of youth and is now entering his peak years. Crucially for Bruce, he knows the Championship inside out and will be able to hit the ground running.

In other Aston Villa transfer news, the club remain a January option for an England international.