Josh King Is Not the Reply to Aston Villa’s Attacking Woes
Aston Villa battled to survival within the Premier League final time period, however their lack of productiveness in entrance of aim can have been a serious trigger for concern for Dean Smith.
Villa’s recognised strikers have been hardly prolific final season. In actual fact, they weren’t. In any respect. The three of Wesley, Mbwana Samatta and Keinan Davis managed a mixed…six objectives within the Premier League in 2019/20 – with 5 of them being scored by Wesley previous to his long-term harm.
Smith’s present strikers lack an actual killer intuition, somebody to ruthlessly hearth residence a half probability with out even trying on the aim. Villa have seemingly recognised their want for an out-and-out goalscorer as they’ve been linked with various gamers in current weeks.
Most notably, Ollie Watkins and Callum Wilson have most continuously been talked about as targets. Nonetheless, Brentford are holding out for a hefty sum with the intention to half methods with Watkins, whereas Wilson not too long ago opted to make the change to Newcastle as an alternative.
However the membership have not wasted any time dwelling on the previous, as an alternative the Telegraph report they’ve gone and made a proper bid of round £16m for Bournemouth’s Josh King. The report additionally claims that Villa wish to signal two strikers, with Watkins being the first goal, whereas they’re additionally taken with Celtic’s Odsonne Edouard and Liverpool’s Rhian Brewster.
King – who has appreciable Premier League expertise – has underneath one 12 months left on his contract and Bournemouth are keen to promote for an inexpensive value, so this seems at first look to signify a reasonably whole lot for Smith as he seems to strengthen.
Proper? Sadly not. The fact is that King is not the reply to their hanging issues.
The Lions’ pursuit of Watkins and Wilson highlights the kind of striker Smith is after. Certainly, Watkins bagged 26 objectives within the Championship final season, and whereas Wilson solely grabbed eight league objectives in a struggling Bournemouth staff final time period, he has confirmed himself within the high flight.
Each gamers pose a risk in entrance of aim, with their tempo, physicality and ending skill. In fact, King additionally has various wonderful attributes, however Smith is in want of a participant like Watkins or Wilson who is ready to discover the half a yard of house to create an opportunity and slot the ball residence.
King is not that man. The mere truth he solely managed 26 pictures (13 on track) within the Premier League in 2019/20 highlights his lack of presence in and across the penalty field. To place this into context, Michail Antonio managed 68 pictures (31 on track) for West Ham final time period, whereas Jack Grealish managed 73 (23 on track).
In fact, pictures figures do not inform an entire story. However they do reaffirm the truth that King would not constantly decide up harmful positions as a striker that will permit him to unleash an effort on aim – by no means thoughts rating. As an alternative, he’s a tireless employee, who seems to make runs into broad areas and hyperlink along with his teammates.
One of many main causes King isn’t the reply to Villa’s issues is right down to the truth that Smith already has related varieties of gamers at his disposal. Mbwana Samatta turned an everyday within the facet within the last fixtures of final season. Certain, he wasn’t precisely prolific, however he was decided to press and act as the primary line of defence when out of possession, whereas he was additionally calm and composed on the ball.
Samatta holds the ball up nicely, permitting him to hyperlink up with these round him. Ought to King be introduced in, he would battle to suit into Smith’s system as his model of play may see him conflict with the likes of Grealish (if he does find yourself staying this summer season).
Dropping deep and drifting into pockets of house, King may restrict the influence of these round him. At Bournemouth, he was efficient in his position as Wilson was the recognised out-and-out striker, however the strain can be on him to ship the products at Villa Park.
The return of Wesley additionally should not be ignored. The striker was starting to settle into life within the Premier League when he suffered his critical harm, however his direct model of play suited Villa and introduced the perfect out of gamers akin to Grealish. When he returns, Smith shall be determined for the membership document signing to hit the bottom working – however this should not be anticipated of him.
The strain and accountability can not merely be positioned on one ahead. It stays to be seen whether or not Villa are capable of signal a striker and even two this summer season, however their pursuit of Watkins and Wilson suggests the membership are conscious of the kind of participant they’re after. Curiosity in Edouard and Brewster additional reaffirms this level, as nicely. Even when they do signal Watkins, the addition of a participant like Brewster would provide Smith extra in and across the penalty field than King.
King merely would not match the profile. Certain, he is accessible in a cut-price deal, however that does not make him the proper match. Experiences have instructed that the board are keen to again Smith within the switch market this summer season, and will this be the case, they have to be turning their consideration away from King and shifting extra critically for the likes of Watkins and/or Edouard or Brewster.
In any case, they’re the kind of strikers Villa want.
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