Frederic Guilbert could be on his way out of Aston Villa after being dropped to the U23s following his omission from Aston Villa’s 1-0 win over Brisbane Roar and 2-2 draw with Manchester United.

The 27-year-old needed to impress Steven Gerrard to be considered as Matty Cash’s deputy for the new season, but he failed to prove his worth and has been replaced by Kaine Kesler Hayden.

Guilbert has 12 months on his deal and a contract extension is unlikely, so Villa have to cash in now or risk losing him for nothing next year. What are Gerrard’s options?

Villa paid £4.5m to sign Guilbert from SM Caen in 2019, but it remains to be seen if they’ll get every penny back through his sale. The Midlands outfit might struggle finding a suitor willing to sign him permanently too, as he’ll be free in a year’s time.

So that leaves another loan move for Guilbert. The 27-year-old was born in France, spent his entire career in his home country before joining Villa and returned to France twice when loans came about, so Ligue 1 likely beckons for him.

A return to Strasbourg seems unlikely after they signed right-back Ronaël Pierre-Gabriel, so he’ll have to join a new club – the sixth of his career after Caen, AS Cherbourg, Girondins Bordeaux, Villa and Strasbourg.

Villa will hope to get most of his wages covered, saving up to £2m-a-year, but they may want to encourage a buying obligation too. If multiple clubs show an interest in Guilbert, a buying obligation could be a way of edging out other suitors.

Guilbert and his family enjoyed their time in Strasbourg, so they may be holding out for a France return.

In other news, Roma, Arsenal, Newcastle look elsewhere as Douglas Luiz considers U-turn