Wednesday, 8 January 2020

Barcelona youngster in talks with Aston Villa

Louie Barry

Aston Villa are in talks to sign Barcelona's England Under-17s striker Louie Barry in a potential £3m deal.

The 16-year-old joined the Spanish giants in July 2019 after 10 years at West Bromwich Albion.

Barry was part of the West Brom squad that reached the FA Youth Cup semi-final last season.

However, he left in the summer after rejecting a professional contract, and the Baggies are believed to be speaking to their lawyers about the situation.

When Barry signed for Barca the club described him as "one of the best young players in English football".

The Baggies were due to receive £235,000 in compensation but that money has never been paid despite West Brom reporting the matter to Fifa.

The Championship promotion candidates now are assessing their options.

In addition to the legal route, BBC Sport understands the club's chief executive Mark Jenkins is speaking with the Football League about the situation.

West Brom's former academy manager, Mark Harrison, took up a similar position at Aston Villa in September.

If Barry had gone to Villa straight from them, the fee would have been decided by a tribunal if there had been no agreement.

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