Aston Villa could make big decision over Barkley's future amid injury woes

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Aston Villa have been in exceptional form this season.

Dean Smith’s side only managed to avoid relegation on the final day of last season.

But this term, they have enjoyed some truly excellent results and are actually closer to European qualification than relegation. 

Villa, of course, thumped the Reds 7-2 earlier this season and have not lost any of their last five games in the top-flight.

Those results include a creditable 1-1 draw with Chelsea and 3-0 wins over both West Bromwich Albion and Crystal Palace.

It comes after a serious summer of investment in which Ross Barkley was a headline-grabbing acquisition, arriving on loan from Chelsea.

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He made six league appearances for Villa at the start of the season, scoring on his debut against Liverpool and also providing an assist in the 3-0 win over Arsenal.

He has been injured for the last few weeks due to a hamstring injury but it seems that he has done enough to convince the club of his talents, with The Guardian reporting that his loan could be made permanent in the January transfer window, which opens on Saturday.

Barkley is valued at £19.3m by Transfermarkt and made a total of 86 appearances for Chelsea following his move from Everton.

GIVEMESPORT’S Harry Sherlock says…

This feels like something of a no-brainer.

If Villa can agree a reasonable price for the ex-England international, they would be securing a versatile back-up to Jack Grealish who can play in both central and attacking midfield.

The 27-year-old’s injury woes have been unfortunate but he had showed signs of forming a decent link-up with Grealish when he was fit.

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Against Arsenal, the two ran riot as Smith’s side recorded a huge win, and it feels as though Barkley could well be available.

Chelsea, after all, have a number of excellent attacking midfielders in their squad; one cannot imagine Barkley returning to Stamford Bridge any time soon.

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