Free agent Ledley could be heading to Aston Villa

Joe Ledley is on Aston Villa’s radar, as Steve Bruce looks to persuade the Wales international to drop down a division and join his Championship side.

Ledley is available on a free transfer after the expiry of his Crystal Palace contract, having spent the previous three-and-a-half years at the Selhurst Park outfit. During this time he made a total of 97 appearances for the Eagles, scoring six goals, yet he only featured in 18 Premier League games last term as Sam Allardyce steered them away from the relegation battle.

Bruce knows the experienced midfielder could be a shrewd addition to his Villa squad, especially on a free transfer, as he looks to reshape his side to mount a bid for promotion next season. The Midlands giants endured a difficult time in the second-tier last term following their relegation in May 2016, and never looked like challenging before limping to a 13th place finish.

This time round Bruce, who succeeded the sacked Roberto Di Matteo in October, expects a much better performance and will try and persuade Ledley to drop down a division to help lead the charge. However, the 30-year-old is also being courted by West Bromwich Albion, who can offer him Premier League football and are managed by his former Palace boss, Tony Pulis.

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