Steven Gerrard left Rangers to take charge of Aston Villa in November and his successor at the Ibrox, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, announced that Jermain Defoe would no longer be a player/coach but just a player.

Frank McAvennie believes the 39-year-old could be brought to Villa as he’s a ‘real asset’ that could help the strikers, let alone gain valuable coaching experience.

He told Football Insider: “I can see Gerrard coming back for Defoe. He was happy to have him on the staff at Rangers, so he clearly trusts him. That won’t have been done as a favour to a mate or anything. This is Rangers we’re talking about.

Defoe joined Rangers on loan from Bournemouth in January 2019 and turned the move permanent 18 months later. He’s gone on to make 74 appearances in all competitions, scoring 32 goals with 10 assists.

The former England international signed a contract over the summer to become a player/coach at Rangers but had the title scrapped months later following van Bronckhorst’s arrival.

“Gerrard clearly rates him highly and I see no reason why he wouldn’t go to Villa when his contract expires. All the things I said in the summer still apply. For a striker, who better to learn from?

“He knows the Premier League so well too. It’s a bit like Gerrard, he will command respect. He can be a real asset to Villa, just like he is at Rangers. I can see this one happening.”

Defoe hasn’t played in the Premier League since 2018/19 so his influence won’t be on the pitch. But the 39-year-old boasts a career total of 284 goals at seven different clubs, so who better to take advice from?

Ollie Watkins has four goals in 12 games across the board this season, Cameron Archer has four goals in five games and new-boy Danny Ings has three in 10. Defoe would have some talented players to work with if lured to Villa Park.

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