Christian Benteke was one of the biggest surprises last season as the Belgian striker scored goal after goal and helped save Aston Villa from relegation.
But it seems that Benteke’s time at Villa Park is nearing it’s end following the player’s decision to formally submit a transfer request to the club.
Not only has that but the Belgian pulled out of the team’s pre-season tour squad to Germany in a bid to try and fast-track a move to a club in the next couple of weeks.
Villa are seemingly resigned to losing their star striker and have admitted that they would accept any bids that the club deemed as realistic.
There isn’t exactly a shortage of clubs chasing Benteke with Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal all keen to try and sign the player over the summer.
Chelsea are thought to be the favourites to sign Benteke with The Blues reportedly ready to make a £30m bid for the striker in the coming days.
Benteke impressed many people in the Premier League last season placing as the fourth top scorer in the league with 19 goals in 34 games.
It was an impressive return for a player who was in his debut season in England following a £7million transfer from Belgian side Genk at the end of last season’s summer transfer window.
Benteke’s form had been considered a lifesaver for Aston Villa who may well have got relegated if it wasn’t for his goals last season having scored double that of second top goalscorer Gabriel Agbonlahor.
Senior officials have admitted that they have been disappointed by Benteke’s decision to leave the club despite having another 3 years left on his current contract at the club. This was underlined by comments made by Paul Lambert who told the BBC that: “While we’re hugely disappointed that Christian has put in a transfer request, it’s important that people appreciate we are trying to build something strong and vibrant here at the club – something this club demands and stands for, and we want Christian to be part of that”.
With Benteke ready to depart the club, it could pose some problems for Villa upfront with the club also set to sell Darren Bent soon leaving Gabriel Agbonlahor and Andreas Weimann as the only full strikers at the club.
No doubt the club will already be searching for a replacement for Benteke but with the Belgian proving to be such a pivotal first team player for Villa last season, it could mean that the side are going to struggle once again as they lose their top players to bigger clubs.