By Amir Mir
Aston Villa will have until noon on Friday to confirm the deals of Henri Lansbury and Conor Hourihane if they are to play against Preston on Saturday afternoon.
Steve Bruce confirmed in his press conference on Friday that the deal for 26-year-old Lansbury is “done”.
Meanwhile, he stated that the club is “waiting” to hear something from Barnsley in regards to playmaker Hourihane.
The Football League states on its official website in section 6 (41.5), that a transferred player will only be eligible to play “if the appropriate forms for his registration or the transfer of his registration are received and found to be in order by The League by 12.00 noon on the day prior to the date of such match.”
Here is Bruce delivering his verdicts on Lansbury and Hourihane:
“In all respects, it looks like a done deal [Lansbury] which I am pleased about,” Bruce told his Friday press conference, as broadcast on the club’s official Facebook page. “We are waiting to hear something on Hourihane from Barnsley.”
Lansbury has scored six goals for a struggling Forest side this season, including netting against Villa earlier on in the campaign.
Hourahine has scored five goals for the Tykes, providing an impressive 12 assists in 24 Championship games.
If the duo are signed up, they will battle for midfield spots with Mile Jedinak, Aaron Tshibola, Ashley Westwood and Gary Gardner.
Bruce will be hoping at least one of the players will be involved for the weekend match as Villa look to end a three-match losing streak in all competitions.
The Midlands side were beaten by local rivals Wolves last time out and they have not netted a goal since the turn of the year.
Striker Ross McCormack has scored only three goals all season, while Agbonlahor has failed to find the back of the net since his return in mid-October.
Key player Jonathan Kodjia and versatile attacker Jordan Ayew are currently away on international duty participating in the Africa Cup of Nations.
Football Insider verdict:
Aston Villa supporters will be pleased that the club is finally making moves in the January transfer window. After signing only one player, Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone prior to today, fans will be pleased that another two are more than likely to be added. Both Henri Lansbury and Conor Hourahine will add what the club has been lacking all season, creativity and that in itself will help Villa drive up the table. The duo will also get the best out of misfiring striker Ross McCormack who has scored only three league goals this term.
In other Aston Villa transfer news, this is to be the likely Villa starting XI if this playmaker duo are signed.