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Manchester United Loan Watch: Johnstone hints at permanent Aston Villa move

The shot-stopper's performances with the Championship side may lead to a switch away from Old Trafford

Aston Villa v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images,

Timothy Fosu-Mensah – Crystal Palace

Timothy Fosu-Mensah was an unused substitute in Crystal Palace’s 2-2 draw away at Bournemouth last weekend. It appears Tim has fallen down the pecking order at the Eagles, as they looked to lean on more experienced players in hope to escape from relegation. The defender has not played 90 minutes since Tottenham Hotspur back in February.

He could potentially return to the starting line-up when Palace host Brighton this weekend.

Andreas Pereira – Valencia CF

The coming of April has spelled good news for the previously injured Pereira. He has featured off the bench in the past two fixtures; consecutive 1-0 wins against CD Leganés and Espanyol.

Although his minutes have been limited, it shows promising signs that he is completely recovered from his injury that hindered a large portion of his loan move. Valencia are unbeaten in nine games and currently sit in third, a point ahead of Real Madrid.

Pereira will hope for some more time on the field as they take on Catalan giants Barcelona this Saturday.

Off the field, Pereira has been hitting headlines. According to an ESPN article, Pereira is seeking talks over his long-term future at Manchester United. Sources close to the playmaker suggest his goal is to break through into the first-team as a regular player of the squad sooner rather than later. With Michael Carrick retiring, and Marouane Fellaini’s future in doubt at Old Trafford, space for Pereira to make an impact may be available.

Sam Johnstone – Aston Villa

Johnstone has now played in every single Championship game for Aston Villa, amassing over 40 games and almost 4,000 minutes. After 10 loan moves, it appears the 25-year-old has finally found a home.

In a recent interview with the Guardian, Johnstone spoke of the possibility of staying with the Championship side.

“It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster,” he said. “It’s been fun getting games in and getting different experiences but I’m 25 now and ready to settle. Hopefully Villa get promoted and we’ll take things from there.”

The shot-stopper has had an impressive season at Villa, and continued his good form in their midweek 1-0 win against Cardiff City. Johnstone made an incredible double save, with the first being dubbed the save of the season by many plaudits. He continued to make several key saves to prevent the visitors from scoring before Jack Grealish’s wondrous volley gave the hosts all three points.

Axel Tuanzebe – Aston Villa

Axel Tuanzebe returned to the starting line-up in Aston Villa’s 1-0 home victory over Cardiff City. However, the youngster lasted just 25 minutes before being substituted. Tuanzebe appeared to hobble off the field, suggesting his hamstring injury has flared up once again.

Conformation of the defender’s injury will be forthcoming in the next couple of days. Meanwhile, Villa have four remaining Championship games; they five points off automatic promotion and hold a ten-point gap from seventh, firmly assuring a playoff spot.

James Wilson – Sheffield United

Wilson has endured a difficult loan spell at Sheffield United, one that has been hampered by injuries. He has played just one minute in the last five games.

Manager Chris Wilder has commented on the frustration that Wilson has suffered during his time at Bramall Lane.

“It’s been stop start for him and for us,” Wilder told The Star. “He cricked his neck, did his ankle and then had a couple of other things. It’s frustrating.”

“Hopefully Willo will have a part to play over the last six games and hopefully a few more after that.”

Wilson has been training however, and is in line to return to action this weekend against Millwall.

Dean Henderson – Shrewsbury Town

Dean Henderson had his first trip to Wembley at the weekend. He featured for Shrewsbury Town in their 1-0 defeat against Lincoln City in the English Football League Trophy Final.

It was a bruising experience for Henderson, who was almost knocked unconscious in a shocking piece of deliberate aggression from Lincoln’s Matt Rhead. Rhead appeared to target Henderson’s head as he was falling over from a challenge, elbowing the young goalkeeper in the face. Rhead only got a yellow card for the action.

Shrewsbury Town return to action on Thursday when they visit Bradford City. They have dropped out of the automatic promotion spot in League One, but a win midweek will see them reduce the deficit with second-placed Blackburn Rovers to three points.

Matty Willock – St. Johnstone

Matty Willock has featured in St. Johnstone’s past three fixtures, albeit all from the bench. At the end of March, he grabbed a goal in his sides 4-1 defeat to Aberdeen. Most recently he played 20 minutes in a goalless draw against Motherwell.

Regan Poole – Northampton Town

Regan Poole made his first appearance for Northampton Town since the start of February in a 3-0 defeat against Blackpool. The Welsh international started in the center of defense but was unable to help his side, as the Cobblers move closer to relegation from League One.

Poole performed well in the game, both offensively and defensively. He came close to getting on the scoresheet, after narrowly missing from a corner. He also spectacularly cleared an attempted shot off the line. His showing may have been enough for his manager to put faith in the youngster for the remaining few games.