Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Whelan Urges Aston Villa To Send This Striker Out On Loan: What Should Be Smith’s Play?

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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 interview with Football Insider, former Leeds United forward Noel Whelan urged Aston Villa to send Cameron Archer out on loan. Whelan said,

“He’s a smashing player.

“All the goals we’ve seen him score have been taken really well. Very cultured, very controlled, he knows exactly what he wants to do with each finish.

“He seems like a natural goalscorer from any area – in or outside the box.

“I think he’s a player who needs to make the step up in his career – for the benefit or him and Villa.

“He’s got to that stage now where under 23’s football just isn’t enough.

“You can see that he can handle the demands of playing against senior sides.

“Now is the right time to give him a different challenge and let him find his feet in order to progress his career so he can come back to Villa a better player.”

Archer’s Recent Emergence At Villa Park

Archer has been in terrific form of late after scoring an excellent hat-trick for the Villans’ U-21 side in their come-from-behind victory versus Burton Albion earlier this month. The 19-year-old has banged in four goals in four senior appearances for Dean Smith‘s side this season across all fronts.

The talented teenager did well to average 4.0 shots, 0.5 key passes and 1.5 dribbles per game in the EFL Cup. He even distributed the ball relatively well as he completed 77.1% of his attempted passes in league cup football (stats via whoscored).

Aston Villa (Cameron Archer)
LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 22: Cameron Archer of Aston Villa takes a knee prior to the Carabao Cup Third Round match between Chelsea and Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge on September 22, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)
The 4th Official uses images provided by the following image agency: Getty Images (https://www.gettyimages.de/)
Imago Images (https://www.imago-images.de/)

What Should Be Smith’s Play With Regards To Archer?

Archer is a moderately-paced striker who can make some clever runs with the ball in the final third. The Walsall-born talent has shown that he can be a composed finisher in front of the opposition goal.

He is slowly but surely developing himself into a top talent, so the Villans should think about listening to Whelan’s advice by sending him out on loan in January or at the end of this season. At the moment, Dean Smith has already got Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings playing as his first-team forwards.

Hence, if the Aston Villa boss can bring in some added cover for them during the winter transfer window, he could afford to send Archer out on loan so that he can gain some valuable first-team experience and come back as a better version of himself next summer.

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