Former Aston Villa attacker Gabriel Agbonlahor has been discussing current Villa midfielder Conor Hourihane and his situation at the club at this moment in time.
On the topic of Hourihane, who has not started a Premier League game for Villa since September, Agbonlahor had this to say on the midfielder’s omission from the starting XI.
He said: “I have spoken to Conor since he got left out and you could just see by even when you’re watching the games on TV, and I’ve covered a few of the games for different channels, even when he’s walking down the tunnel before the game, you can see the anger in his face; the disappointment, at half time walking into the tunnel you can see the anger of a player who just wants to be playing football and I feel like it hurts more when you’re playing well and you get dropped by a new signing coming in.
“When you’re a footballer and you get dropped, you want to be dropped because you had a bad game and you hold your hands up, you got to do better to get back in the team. When the team lose a game, you might get a chance the next game, but he’s [been] dropped by having an amazing start to the season with goals and assists and he was playing some good football, so I just feel sorry for Conor, I just feel like he deserves that chance against West Ham to come straight into the side because he offers a goal threat.”
Would you start Hourihane against West Ham?
Hourihane started Villa’s first two league games of the season against Sheffield United and Fulham but then was an unused substitute for their next five games where summer loan signing Ross Barkley started ahead of him, backing up what Agbonlahor had to say in the podcast.
As Agbonlahor mentioned in the podcast, Hourihane, who is currently valued at £5.4 million, managed to pick up a goal and an assist before being dropped out of the team, both coming in Villa’s 3-0 win over Fulham.
TIF Thoughts on Gabriel Agbonlahor’s comments on Hourihane…
In our view, with Hourihane having managed to grab himself a goal and an assist before being dropped from the team, we agree with Agbonlahor that the midfielder may feel a bit disappointed with being left out of the team earlier in the season.
In Villa’s recent 2-1 defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion, Barkley, unfortunately, suffered an injury in the early stages of the game that forced him off the pitch and is now expected to miss Villa’s next two games.
Because of this injury to Barkley, this could now allow Hourihane to regain his place in Villa’s starting XI while the Englishman is out of action.
With Villa set to play West Ham United on Monday night, it’ll be intriguing to see whether or not Smith decides to start Hourihane against the Hammers.