Alan Hutton has urged Aston Villa to splash the cash on signing Brentford striker Ollie Watkins this summer.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Villa and Scotland defender believes the forward is worth in excess of £20million.
The Express and Star report that while Villa are set to launch a formal bid for the 24-year-old, their initial offer is set to fall short of the Bees’ £25million asking price.
Watkins was a standout performer for Thomas Franks’ men last season as he struck 26 goals on the way to the Championship play-off final.
Hutton insists that he would have no problem meeting the Bees’ demands after his outstanding performances in the Championship in recent years.
Hutton told Football Insider: “It’s like anything, Brentford aim high and Villa aim low and that’s just how it works – if they did have to go to the £25million, no problem, just get it done.
“I think they would have watched him enough to know that he’s worth that. He’s very young as well so there’s room for him to improve and then possibly sell on if need be.
“I think if they could get him for £18million it would be a snip, it’d be a steal so I don’t see it being a problem if they have to go up to the £25million mark because I definitely think he’s worth it.”
Villa struggled for goals during the 2019/20 campaign and big-money signing Wesley Moraes netted just five times before he suffered a season-ending injury.
Watkins meanwhile has scored 45 goals in 132 Championship appearances to date.
In other Aston Villa news, Hutton has been left drooling over a “perfect” potential part-exchange deal.