Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert was working to a strict salary cap during the January market.

The Daily Mail says during the January transfer window, agents were aware that players on more than £35,000 per week would struggle to be sanctioned by Villa. Lewis Holtby, of Tottenham, and Manchester City defender Joleon Lescott, on £70,000 and £90,000 deals were priced out.

In recent weeks, however, Lambert has changed the dynamic and stressed that big money is now needed to propel Villa up the table. He wants a new spine to his team and has ambitiously targeted players such as Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez, and once again Holtby and Lescott.

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