Recent rumours linking FC Schalke’s gangly midfielder Jermaine Jones to a possible switch to Villa Park next summer is only part of the story.

The Cutter understands that Alex McLeish has also been heavily scouting Jones’ highly-rated team-mate José Manuel Jurado as he prepares an audacious double swoop on the Bundesliga outfit.

Former Spanish under-21 international Jurado – who is equally adept on the left flank as he is creating from central areas – has previously attracted genuine interest from some big hitters including Inter and Liverpool while he was also reputedly a £8m target for Arsene Wenger last August, but another season at the Gelsenkirchen club has lowered his stock somewhat and Villa feel they can now make their move. Should Schalke fail to secure a Champion’s League spot this term – and at present this seems likely – it will leave them vulnerable to offers for some of their prized assets and the 25 year old schemer is very much in that category.

After failing to break into the Real Madrid team in his youth Jurado moved across the city to Atlético where he equally struggled to make any significant impact despite racking up over eighty appearances. It is only since his 2010 move to Germany that he truly found his feet and his array of talents that includes an exquisite first touch and fantastic movement would be a welcome addition to the Premiership, especially so for Villa who have been crying out for such guile of late.

McLeish must hope there is little interest from elsewhere however because funds will be tight for a summer overhaul and should any bidding war ensue Villa will surely be outmuscled.

Jones meanwhile represents an altogether easier catch for the midlands club who are desperate to add some consistent quality to their engine room to avoid another disappointing campaign. The German-born US international enjoyed a season-long loan with Blackburn Rovers last year so is well equipped to the demands of the English top flight and the feeling is that he would welcome a swift return.  With more than sufficient cover in midfield areas he is considered expendable by the Germans though they would seek a fee in the region of £5m.