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Exclusive: Aston Villa eyeing Nigeria international as short-term solution; defender confirms he’s moving

Aston Villa are understood to be monitoring Nigeria left-back Chima Akas ahead of the January transfer window, with the player confirming he’s looking for a move.

The full-back has seen his reputation transformed over the last 12 months after breaking into the Super Eagles’ first team and becoming a key player under new coach Sunday Oliseh.

However, he was impotent to prevent his club side, Port Harcourt-based Sharks FC, dropping out of the Nigerian Premier League.

Upon confirmation of their relegation, Akas—who has unseated AS Monaco’s Elderson Echiejile in Nigeria’s starting XI—revealed that he is looking for a move away from the club.

“I will definitely not play in the NNL next season. There are interests from some NPFL teams, but I am keeping the names until there is a deal,” Akas said, as per African Football.

“Relegation of teams is part of football, though nobody wants to taste it. I feel bad that my team, Sharks got relegated, but it was beyond my power to stop it.”

Caught Offside’s sources understand that Villa are considering Akas as a potential solution to their problem left-back spot.

The Villains invested in the problem position during the summer when they signed Jordan Amavi, but a knee injury has prematurely ended the former OGC Nice man’s season.

Jordan Amavi | Will Aston Villa turn to Chima Akas to replace crocked left-back?

Jordan Amavi

Akas started Nigeria’s last match—a 2-0 victory over Swaziland in World Cup qualifying—to pick up his fifth cap, but was replaced by Europa League regular Elderson in the 86th minute.

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The full-back recently scored a superb volley in the Nigeria Premier League derby against Dolphins in September, a demonstration of his impressive technical skill, and will represent the Super Eagles at the 2016 Championship of African Nations for home-based players, unless, of course, he completes a move to Europe.

 

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