Transfer Round-Up: Rodrigo Bentancur rumored in, academy stars loaned out

Aston Villa are reportedly interested in signing defensive midfielder Rodrigo Bentancur from Serie A giants Juventus.

Various news outlets confirmed the club’s interest in the Uruguayan and suggested Juventus would accept a bid in the £18-25 million range.

It’s no secret the club covets a defensive midfielder, and the 24-year-old, who’s made 31 Champions League appearances for Juventus, seems a good fit for Steven Gerrard’s side.

At 6-foot-2, Bentancur is a physically-strong midfielder comfortable using both feet. He’s played in 131 league matches for Juventus since joining in 2017 and won three Serie A titles with the club.

Juventus reportedly would not sell Bentancur until they secured his replacement, but Fabrizio Romano said on Thursday that Juve was close to finalizing a deal for Fiorentina’s Dušan Vlahović.

More on this in the coming days.

Cameron Archer loaned to Preston North End

Villa announced on Monday that academy product Cameron Archer joined Preston North End on loan until the end of the season.

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND – JANUARY 26: Cameron Archer of Preston North End (C) celebrates with teammates Greg Cunningham and Brad Potts of Preston North End after scoring their team’s second goal during the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Preston North End at The Hawthorns on January 26, 2022 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Archer made three Premier League appearances for Villa this season and scored four times in two Carabao Cup matches.

In his first appearance for Preston, Archer scored a 76th-minute goal to secure a 2-0 win at West Brom on Wednesday.

The forward spent the entirety of the 2020-21 campaign in the National League with Solihull Moors, scoring four times in 26 appearances.

Arjan Raikhy joins Grimsby Town

Midfielder Arjan Raikhy will spend the rest of the season on loan at Grimsby Town of the National League.

The 19-year-old made eight appearances for Stockport County in the first half of the season.

Since returning from loan, he played twice for the Villa U23s.