Usually at a football club you have one first choice goalkeeper who, barring suspension or injury, spends the whole season between the sticks – not the case at Aston Villa.
Having seen Manchester United loanee Sam Johnstone return to Old Trafford only to join midlands rivals West Brom, the Villans brought in Norwegian international Orjan Nyland to fill the void, immediately taking his place in the starting XI and remaining there for all but one of their Championship games until January.
Whether he should have remained as a regular in the line up is up for debate, the 28-year-old suffering a number of high profile errors which contributed to the club’s poor form and was no doubt a factor in the decision to snap up Lovre Kalinic in the winter window.
The Croatian replaced Nyland, who coincidentally suffered a season ending injury, but having suffered an injury which saw Jed Steer take his place, has been unable to take his spot back from the English stopper.
Despite having had five goalkeepers play all season – the now-departed Andre Moreira and veteran Mark Bunn also finding game time – Portuguese publication Record have linked the Villans with Desportivo Aves keeper Quentin Beunardeau, the Championship side said to be ‘well placed’ in the hunt for the 25-year-old.
A new goalkeeper surely means that Dean Smith is not happy with his current options at Villa Park and leaves all four of the senior options facing an uncertain future in the first team.
No one, other than perhaps Steer, has shone brightly this season and so they must all consider themselves under threat – it could well be all change between the sticks next season.