Noel Whelan has tipped Aston Villa to make a move to sign Atletico Madrid’s Kieran Trippier and insisted that it would be a “real coup” if they did.

The former Leeds United forward, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, heaped praise on the 29-year-old and claimed he was baffled why the defender left Tottenham 12 months ago.

The Telegraph report that the right-back is on the radar of Villa boss Dean Smith as he looks to bolster his defence ahead of next season.

Trippier made 33 appearances for Atletico in an impressive debut season for the Spanish giants following his shock departure from Spurs last July.

Whelan suggested that Smith needs to sign a right-back this summer with Ahmed Elmohamady and Frederic Guilbert having struggled last season.

“It would be a real coup if they can get him out of Atletico Madrid but they have sold players in recent times that you never thought they would sell, take Godin for example,” he told Football Insider.

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“Trippier had a very good season in Spain and I was very surprised when he left Tottenham, quite frankly.

“If they do get him it could provide some stability to the right-hand side. Villa have been chopping and changing on that right-hand side with wing-backs. Elmohamady has come in, Guilbert has played at times – it is a position that has never ben controlled by one player.

“Trippier would definitely add strength to the team. Villa made a lot of defensive progress towards the end of the season and Trippier would add a lot more quality and discipline to that side, offensively as well as defensively and let’s not forget that he is a set-piece taker as well. He is a specialist.”

In other Aston Villa news, Dean Smith has set his sights on signing 15m-valued West Ham target.