Mystery in Austria over reported Villa link to striker

Aston Villa

No-one at Austria Vienna knows anything about Aston Villa's reported interest in Christoph Monschein and neither do they think he's been scouted by the club.

Villa were this week linked with a January move for Monschein, who has been in good form for Austria Vienna but is no spring chicken as he is 27 years of age.

It is possible that he is a late developer, but most players from the Austrian league are long gone before they hit 27 if they are destined for bigger things.

Now Austrian newspaper Kronen Zeitung report that there is genuine puzzlement at Monschein’s club about the rumour of a Premier League side such as Villa being interested.

In a small paragraph tacked onto the end of another article on Saturday, they report that nobody at the club has even seen an Aston Villa scout at any of their games to get a closer look at the uncapped player.

In this era of analytics, technical scouts and video scouting programs, it is possible that Villa have identified Monschein, who has bagged 10 goals from 14 Austrian Bundesliga outings in 2019-2020, without actually sending a representative to see him live.

But, as boss Dean Smith seeks more goals in the quest for survival, it is also possible that Villa are looking at higher-level leagues and for strikers with better records than Monschein for an immediate solution.

Villa currently sit in 17th place of the 20 teams in the Premier League table, with 11 points from 12 games played.

They are three points clear of 18th-placed Watford but know that the Hornets are probably not as bad as their position suggests and could easily pick up some momentum after their win over Norwich City.

The Villans have scored 17 top-flight goals this term but five of those came in one match when they thrashed the Canaries at Carrow Road.