Man Overboard

Aston Villa are looking increasingly likely to lose Jordan Amavi after Steve Bruce purposely left him out of the opening day squad against Hull City.

After Sevilla’s attempt to buy the 23-year-old floundered earlier in pre-season, Amavi has been linked with several clubs in recent weeks, and it now seems that a move away is finally crystallising.

Currently, it’s reported that his former club Nice, Marseille, Fiorentina (who have already bought Jordan Veretout and Carlos Sanchez off Villa) and Galatasaray, are all in the hunt for the French left-back. With Marseille the current favourites for his services.

 

In terms of Villa getting their house in order in terms of Financial Fair Play, Amavi was always top of the sell list due to the potential transfer fee he could command.

Considering the player cost a reported £10m and he can’t get into the current Villa first XI, if the club can recoup anywhere close to the fee they bought him for, it’s only natural the Villa board would take any bids seriously.

Some supporters though, would have seen the breakdown of his transfer to Sevilla and the prospect of keeping him, as a blessing in disguise.

However, there’s no way the player will want to play second fiddle in the Championship, if he wants to get his career back on track. After all, he was originally tipped to be the French national team’s left-back at one stage.

Amavi can cover both left-back and left-wing, which Villa desperately need over the course of the season, with options currently limited.

Gapping Holes

If Amavi went, Neil Taylor would be left without any seasoned back-up at left-back, since Aly Cissokho and Nathan Baker both departed in the summer.

Further up the field, Villa only really have Andre Green as a natural left-winger. While it would be the right step to give the young winger a go, his final ball and decision making are questionable at the moment, so he’s still very much a work in progress.

While Green can only benefit from games, the 19-year-old can’t be expected to play every game in a long season.

Options So Far

In the event of Amavi departing, Villa will perhaps need both a left-back and left midfielder to feel comfortable tackling this season.

Certainly, the breakdown of the Sevilla deal for the French full back now proves to be unfortunate, as it leaves Villa needing to fix an issue with the squad, after the season has already started, which is far from ideal in terms of planning.

So far, Villa have just been attached with young wingers in the past week.

Firstly, there’s the link to Huddersfield winger Joe Lolley.

Lolley was part of Birmingham City’s academy, but is actually an Aston Villa fan, which will give him instant plus points with some fans  Although, hopefully, he would be more successful than the last Villa fan that the club signed, Joleon Lescott.

Ironically, it was a foot injury Lolley picked up playing against Villa for Huddersfield last season, that sidelined him for five months and resulted in dropping to the outskirts of David Wagner’s first team plans for the Terriers first season in the Premier League.

The right-footed Lolley is mainly a right-winger, but can play on the other wing and attacking midfield.

It’s fair to say the main reason he was initially linked was due to Jack Grealish’s injury, but the swift capture of Spurs’ youngster Josh Onomah, has probably seen the reality of any interest dissolve.

Another option is to loan 20-year-old Liverpool winger, Ryan Kent, who can perhaps claim more legitimately to play on both wings.

After spending a season on loan at Barnsley, Liverpool boss Jürgen Klopp’s recent praise may see him have a chance of being part of Liverpool’s plans this season with their Champions League involvement needing them to have a bigger squad to tackle their increased fixture list.



Balance

With Villa needing desperately to build a team for promotion and seeking depth and options on the left-hand, at least another genuine left-footer will be needed.

Villa started against Hull City on the opening day with Gabby Agbonlahor floating in from the left side, but like Jonathan Kodjia occasionally doing the same from the right side last season, it’s only a short-term fix.

Yes, Agbonlahor scored, but you could argue, a better balanced team with the players in tune with each other’s positions, would have won the Hull game by half-time.

If Neil Taylor gets injured or whether Andre Green impresses or not, Villa will need other options, rather than short-term fixes, if their credentials for promotion this season are to be taken seriously.

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7 COMMENTS

  1. If Bruce cant evaluate the talent that is in the squad now, why should he be in charge of buying more. When this is done, it will take years to recover, the owner will have buggered off, and we will be still stuck in the championship. Its the first match of the season and 80% of supporters are sick and tired already.
    No more time to gel. You have had your time. Picking Bacuna over Hourihane. Transferring every bit of skill we ever had in the squad. For example, Whelan is a destroyer. He was asked to do too much Saturday. Gave up 3 in midfield, one they scored from. We have Jedinak for that. You dont buy a player for 3 weeks until he is ready. Experience or not, you cant play both at the same time. Green??? he came on and played well.Yes, should have scored but gave us an energy boost missing the whole match. Besides the set plays, Lansbury was useless. Saving the best for last. Needing a goal and pulling Hogan off. Our only scoring option after the Great Gabby packed it in after 7 minutes. Now Chris Samba a secret weapon. You cant make up how bad this is. I have never in my life felt this way after ONE match. Even if we win a few, and I pray we do, it changes nothing. The dinosaur with the last name of Bruce may not get a job as a Portuguese greens keepers assistant after this. Is it too much to ask for a manager who can put the best starting 11 on the pitch. Apparently after Lamberk, Sherwood, RDM, and now Bruce, it is. Based on this, might as well clean the board out too.

  2. sell amarvi and gardner, sell or loan maccorgate, go for Snodgrass. the ideal wide leftside player for us. imo

  3. I said it all last week and I will say it again for all the good it will do. We don’t need wingers we need a striker, if Kodjia is out for another 4 or 5 weeks and results don’t go our way it’s going to be too late, why are we playing Green ok he may well be one for the future but he’s no where near good enough for now, his decision making and final ball and after yesterday we can include his goal scoring is to put it mildly shocking, I also said last week that Hogan doesn’t give me any confidence and I see nothing to change that. Bruce is already coming out with excuses but frankly it’s not good enough, same old same old just like last season and now he’s wanting to buy a winger beggars belief. The fans can clearly see that we desperately need a striker but obviously the manager can’t. And whilst having a rant I am sick to death with reading about McCormack same old rubbish day after day, get rid as soon as possible, let’s keep Amavi and play him on the wing in place of Green. I think the club have lost the plot and as for promotion la la land comes to mind

    • Yep, I know and have mentioned it in previous discussions on the subject, but people are understandably still to be convinced by him.

      • unless he’s another who performs better in Internationals we should be seeing better from him

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