​Aston Villa will back Dean Smith during the January transfer window, despite calls for the manager to be sacked.


A 3-1 loss to Southampton on Saturday saw Villa drop into the Premier League relegation zone, with Saints leapfrogging them into 17th-place. There has been speculation Smith could be axed after a fourth-straight top-flight defeat, but the board have instead decided to strengthen the 48-year-old's squad.

Dean Smith

According to the ​BBC, the ​Villans hierarchy are looking to bring in a number of players next month, hoping to make several permanent signings as well as loan arrivals.


Having secured promotion to the ​Premier League in May, the club went all out to help guarantee their survival, with ​Manchester United the only first division side to have spent more over the summer.


Villa had a total outlay of £133m in the summer, though not all of their investment has proved wise. England defender Tyrone Mings was purchased for over £20m and has been superb under Smith, but some of his counterparts have struggled to adapt to life in England.


Wesley, who also cost in excess of £20m, has scored on only four occasions during his 18 Premier League appearances, with his last goal coming on 5 October, when the Villans beat ​Norwich City 5-1 at Carrow Road.


News of their eagerness to spend in January may come as a surprise, given the club are currently failing to meet Financial Fair Play regulations, and could be forced to sell players to avoid being handed a hefty fine by the authorities.

Wesley

However, that's a penalty Villa may be willing to pay if breaking FFP rules helps them stay afloat in the top-flight.


They may not have the same attitude next term, though. It's understood the Premier League are discussing ​plans to introduce a points-deduction as punishment for breaching FFP in the future, which would clearly have a greater impact on Villa's fight against the drop.


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