Fulham look set to miss out on Villa-bound Targett


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Fulham have been dealt a blow with the news that former loan star Matt Targett is close to joining Aston Villa from Southampton in a deal that could rise to £17million.

Southampton have given permission for their homegrown left-back to undergo a medical with Aston Villa, who swapped places with Fulham when they won promotion to the Premier League by winning the Championship play-off final last May.

The Saints wanted to keep the defender, who made 21 Championship appearances for the Cottagers in their promotion campaign of 2017-18, but understand his frustrations at playing understudy to first-choice left-back Ryan Bertrand at the age of 23.

Two other mid-table Premier League sides, Newcastle United and West Ham, were also interested in Targett – as well as Fulham, the 9.00 second favourites to win the English Championship in 2019-20.

Fulham have also been linked with Southampton striker Charlie Austin, who is no longer wanted at St Mary’s, but there is expected to be intense competition for the 29-year-old’s signature.

Reports this weekend claim the ex-Queens Park Rangers striker is wanted by Fulham and West Brom, who are 10.00 to be the Championship’s outright winners, as well as Premier League clubs Aston Villa and Crystal Palace.

Southampton are understood to be valuing Austin at £8million after telling him he can move on this summer.

Fulham will be looking to make some key additions before they kick off their Championship campaign away at Barnsley on August 3 – where they are 2.25 to take all three points.

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