Aston Villa’s owners have hit back after Mateu Alemany’s decision to turn down a move to Villa Park and remain at Barcelona.

That’s according to Marca, who carry comments from sources close to Aston Villa’s leadership today after something of a turbulent fortnight for the Midlands club.

They appeared to be set to hire the Barcelona director of football for a similar role at Aston Villa, with it reported they had lured him to Birmingham with the promise of big funds and a project that has already started to take off under Unai Emery’s leadership.

All appeared to be well on the deal, with Barcelona announcing Alemany’s departure and him seemingly on his way to Villa Park.

However, this week saw a dramatic turnaround in the case, with Alemany deciding to pull out of the move and instead remain where he was.

That decision shocked many, including Aston Villa, and was followed by numerous reports on what may have caused the sudden 180 degree turn from Alemany.

The Spanish press, at least, were happy to suggest it was because Alemany had been duped in some way, claiming that the funds and ambitions he thought he was signing up for were in fact not a reality.

That’s something the Aston Villa owners, or at least sources Marca say are close to them, are keen to dispute.

“We have the most difficult figure to find, a world-class manager like Unai Emery,” the newspaper quote ‘official sources’ saying.

“And we have a sports plan based on the style of play and mentality of the coach. In addition, we have an executive structure that will provide the manager with operability.

“Some media that unconditionally attributed to us the immediate signing of hundreds of millions in Mateo’s alleged sporting plan, when there was nothing signed with him, the next day they question the economic solidity of the club.

“The solidity of the project is beyond doubt and will be seen during the summer, as we have already seen this year when the team has been, after City, the best team in the Premier League in the second half of the season.

“(Aston Villa) needs a natural process of sustainable growth to establish itself in the English and European elite. With Unai we are going to achieve it.”