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Tim Sherwood Labels This Aston Villa Defender As ‘Brilliant’: Does He Deserve Such High Praise?

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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 segment with Sky Sports’ Soccer Saturday (transcripted by HITC), football pundit and former Premier League winner Tim Sherwood labelled Aston Villa defender Ezri Konsa as ‘brilliant’ for his incredible impact at Villa Park this season. When asked to share his thoughts on Villa’s form of late, Sherwood said,

“They were missing Ezri Konsa against Burnley and I think he has been brilliant this season, with Mings in the centre-back position. They miss Cash as well. Douglas Luiz. They did it without a few. Ross Barkley as well.”

Konsa’s Excellent Form At Villa Park This Season

Even though Konsa has missed a few matches for the West Midlands outfit this season, yet he deserves a lot of credit for taking his chances when Dean Smith has relied on him to deliver some strong defensive performances at the heart of the Villan defence this season.

The 23-year-old has participated in 11 matches for his current employers this term, finding the back of the net twice while picking up one yellow card in various competitions. He has caught the eye for his resolute defensive displays over the past few months after he averaged 0.4 tackles, 0.6 interceptions, 4.7 clearances and 0.8 shots per game in the Premier League. Konsa has even distributed the ball relatively well out from the back as evidenced by his pass success rate of 83.9% in top-flight football (stats via whoscored).

Tim Sherwood labels Aston Villa's Konsa as 'brilliant' (Konsa is seen in the photo)
Arsenal’s French striker Alexandre Lacazette (L) vies for the ball against Aston Villa’s English defender Ezri Konsa (R) during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium in London on November 8, 2020. (Photo by RICHARD HEATHCOTE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

What Does The English Centre-Half Add To Dean Smith’s Team?

Konsa has decent pace under his belt that helps him get back into position quickly when the opposition are looking to threaten on the counter. He has made some vital clearances at the back and deserves a pat on the back for playing his way out from defence quite well this season.

The London-born talent can even pull off a few crucial interceptions for his team when needed. At 23, he is a player on the rise and could take his game to another level when he hits the prime stage of his career in the coming years.

Does Konsa Deserve Such High Praise?

Based on his solid performances in defence this season, Konsa is completely worthy of Sherwood’s high praise as he has been exceptional alongside Tyrone Mings at the centre of the Villa backline. When fit, he has been one of the first names in Dean Smith’s teamsheet because of his growing influence on the defensive end of the field.

Konsa has missed a couple of matches recently because of illness and is a slight doubt for his team’s upcoming league clash versus Crystal Palace at Villa Park. He needs to regain his first-team spot as soon as possible if he intends to continue taking great strides towards improving himself in the remainder of this Premier League campaign.

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