Aston Villa

Aston Villa: Preece praises Ashley Young’s impact behind the scenes

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Aston Villa full-back Ashley Young has been “massive behind the scenes” since rejoining the West Midlands side from Inter Milan in 2021.

That is according to the Birmingham Mail’s Villa correspondent Ashley Preece, who was speaking on the Claret & Blue podcast prior to last night’s win.

Young re-signed for Villa in June 2021 on a free transfer, after leaving Villa Park for Manchester United in a £17m deal ten years previously.

The 37-year-old played a bit-part role at the club last season, mainly acting as a back-up full-back, playing in 25 games in all competitions according to Transfermarkt.

But Preece suggests that the experienced Villa man has offered more behind the scenes as well as on the pitch, during his time at the club over the last few scenes. 

“He’s a great squad player to have around the group,” Preece told the Claret & Blue podcast.

“And as he proved against City, there’s life in the old dog yet with Ashley Young.

“So yeah, looking forward to seeing him in action tomorrow again, can he back up a good performance last time out and really drive Villa forward to three points on Friday night?

“So yeah, massive behind the scenes Young you know, and such an important signing across the last two summers.”

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TIF Thoughts on Preece’s comments 

We believe that Young, who has been hailed as ‘outstanding’, has been a solid addition at Villa Park, with the full-back having an equally important role off the pitch as well as on it.

However, he has generally been reliable since his return to the club, and put in a solid performance for Gerrard’s side when called off the bench against Manchester City, following an injury suffered by Matty Cash, earning the veteran a SofaScore rating of 7.00.

Therefore, we think that signing Young on a free transfer has been a smart bit of business for the West Midlands giants, and the full-back may be worth keeping around even just as a leadership figure over the next few seasons.

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