Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Aston Villa Midfielder Is Gathering Interest From Turkey: Should Smith Sanction His Exit This Summer?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent print edition, Turkish news outlet Sozcu has claimed that Aston Villa midfielder Marvelous Nakamba is gathering interest from Turkey as Galatasary remain interested in acquiring his services during this ongoing transfer window. It is believed that the Turkish club want to strengthen their midfield and has identified the Villa player as an ideal target this summer (transcripted and translated by Sport Witness).

Nakamba’s Impressive Form For The Villans Recently

The 26-year-old has so far made a bright start to this campaign as he helped his team pick up two impressive wins over Burton Albion and Bristol City respectively in the EFL Cup. However, the 12-time Zimbabwean international had a challenging year in the previous campaign when he came close to being relegated with the Villans from the Premier League.

Nakamba made 34 appearances for the West Midlands outfit in the last term, picking up seven yellow cards across various competitions. The Hwange-born midfield ace did well to average 1.9 tackles, 1.3 interceptions, 1.1 clearances and 0.5 dribbles per game in the English top tier last season. He was also relatively accurate with his ball-distribution from midfield after he completed 84.3% of his attempted passes in league football (stats via whoscored).

The Zimbabwean talent is not a regular starter at Villa Park anymore, which is why it makes sense for him to seek a move elsewhere in search of regular first-team football in the coming seasons. Hence, a switch to Turkey seems logical for the midfielder at this stage of his football career.

Aston Villa's Nakamba is gathering interest from Turkey (Aston Villa's Nakamba is seen in the photo)
Aston Villa’s Zimbabwean midfielder Marvelous Nakamba (L) runs with the ball in front of Bristol City’s English striker Antoine Semenyo (R) during the English League Cup third round football match between Bristol City and Aston Villa at Ashton Gate in Bristol, south-west England, on September 24, 2020. (Photo by PETER CZIBORRA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

What Does The Zimbabwean International Offer On The Field?

Nakamba is a deceptively quick midfielder who loves a tackle in midfield and can provide adequate protection for his teammates at the back. He is proficient at scanning the threat out quickly which allows him to step in and win the ball back or make a crucial clearance for his side on the defensive end of the pitch.

The Zimbabwean midfield ace has got the strength to overpower the opposition in the air and usually packs a lot of venom with his strikes from long range. He has served as a useful squad player for the Villans so far, but Ross Barkley’s arrival on loan could further harm his first-team chances in this new campaign.

Should The Villans Sanction Nakamba’s Departure This Summer?

Smith has currently got Douglas Luiz, John McGinn, Conor Hourihane, Henri Lansbury and now, Ross Barkley vying for a midfield place at Villa Park. Therefore, the Villa boss has enough depth in his midfield department to cope with Nakamba’s potential exit this summer. All in all, it is only fair to the player if the Villans cut him loose before the transfer window slams shut later this month.

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