Aston Villa deny SAFC interest in Nathan Delfouneso

ASTON VILLA have shrugged off speculation linking Nathan Delfouneso with a reunion with former boss Martin O’Neill at Sunderland.

The carousel of names connected to Sunderland is already in full-swing despite O’Neill being in the Black Cats hotseat for less than a fortnight.

Promising striker Delfouneso was linked to a £3million move to Sunderland over the weekend, with the 20-year-old’s career appearing to stall at Villa Park.

Delfouneso got his breakthrough under O’Neill and looked a bright prospect for the future, but has made just one Premier League appearance this season.

But Villa insist they are not looking to sell Delfouneso, with assistant manager Peter Grant claiming there has been no contact with Sunderland.

Grant said: “No, we have not and we’re not looking for enquiries in any shape or form. We’re very thin on the ground with the squad as it is.

“We’re not in the position to do so at this moment in time. Look at the weekend, we were really down to the bare bones.

“We’re looking now to just maintain the squad and it’s up to lads like Nathan to make sure they’re part of the squad and the team.

“Nathan’s got the talent, we know he’s got goals in him. But, like all young boys, the consistency level has got to be there all the time.

“He’s getting to that stage of his career now that that’s the next thing that’s got to kick into his game. He’s certainly got the raw talent.”