By Wayne Veysey

2nd Oct, 2019 | 7:00am

Villa plot transfer missions for Rangers player as £20m set aside for Jan swoop -Ibrox Exclusive

Aston Villa are set to keep close tabs on Rangers star Alfredo Morelos as they set aside £20million-plus for a new striker in the January window, Football Insider has learned.

The Midlands giants spent nearly £150million on 12 new signings over the summer but plans to recruit two orthodox front men failed to come to fruition.

A Villa source has told Football Insider that Dean Smith and the club hierarchy will make a new move for a striker in the winter window who can compete with Wesley Moraes for a starting spot.

Morelos is among those to be targeted by the Premier League club as they look to land a proven goalscorer with his best years ahead of him.

The Colombia international has scored 13 goals from 17 appearances this season and delivered his latest outstanding performance in last weekend’s 5-0 mauling of Aberdeen.

Morelos, 23, has also showed signs of reducing the temperamental flaws that have bedevilled his three seasons in Glasgow.

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He was sent off five times last season, but has received just three bookings in the new campaign following strong criticism from Steven Gerrard of his 2018-19 conduct.

The disciplinary issues ended Rangers’ hopes of securing a major summer transfer fee from a European club for a player they value at above £15million.

Morelos signed a new contract in March that runs until the summer of 2023 and is one of the best paid players in Scotland.

Villa did try and add to capture of Wesley, signed for £22million from Club Brugges, but were put off by escalating asking prices late in the window.

Smith’s side have scored just eight goals from their seven Premier League matches this season and are 18th in the table.

In other Rangers news, it can be REVEALED that the club have offered a £4million international ace deal.