Aston Villa to bid £5m for Barnsley skipper Marc Roberts

In demand: Barnsley's  Marc Roberts clears from Sheffield Wednesday's  Steven Fletcher last season. Photo Steve Ellis
In demand: Barnsley's Marc Roberts clears from Sheffield Wednesday's Steven Fletcher last season. Photo Steve Ellis

Barnsley captain Marc Roberts is the subject of serious interest from Championship rivals Aston Villa, it has been reported.

The Villains are reportedly willing to splash the cash in a £5million move for the highly-rated defender.

Roberts has been a rock at the heart of the Reds’ defence over the past couple of seasons and he has deservedly attracted the interest of bigger clubs.

There were rumours of Premier League interest for the towering centre-back.

But Roberts stuck to his job and did not let speculation derail his performances.

Back in January Steve Bruce’s side nabbed former captain Conor Hourihane and promising right-back James Bree.

And it looks like they are ready to raid Oakwell again.

If Roberts were to leave his hometown club he would become the latest in a long line of high-profile departures and leave a huge hole to fill at the back.

After securing promotion back to the Championship via the play-offs, Roberts’ centre-back partner Alfie Mawson left in a £5million move to top-tier side Swansea City.

Hourihane, Bree and top scorer Sam Winnall were then sold in January, with Marley Watkins and Josh Scowen leaving for free this summer.

The Reds have a history of developing defenders and selling them on, with John Stones, Mason Holgate and Mawson all leaving for the Premier League.

Moving to Villa Park would see Roberts’ earnings soar, but he would reportedly demand first-team football.

Any deal could drag on, with Villa needing to sell due to Financial Fair Play rules after their recent spending.