Friday, August 12, 2022

Aston Villa To Rival West Ham United For This Talented Striker: What Will He Add To Gerrard’s Side?

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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 report, Eurosport stated that Aston Villa are set to rival West Ham United for Flamengo striker Gabriel Barbosa during the January transfer window. It is understood that the Villans are eyeing a short-term loan move for the Brazilian centre-forward next month.

Gabriel Barbosa’s Excellent Numbers In Brazilian Football

The 25-year-old had proven himself to be a consistent goal-scorer in Brazilian football in the previous campaign when he produced several match-winning displays as the focal point of Flamengo’s attack. Barbosa banged in 29 goals and provided nine assists in 43 appearances for the Brazilian side last season across various competitions.

The South American marksman performed well to average 3.6 shots and 1.1 key passes per 90 minutes in the Brazilian Serie A. He was even tidy when distributing the ball in the attacking third of the field, as evidenced by his pass success rate of 82.5% in the top tier of Brazilian football (stats via whoscored).

Aston Villa (Gabriel Barbosa)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – NOVEMBER 30: Gabriel Barbosa of Flamengo celebrates after scoring a goal during a match between Flamengo and Ceara as part of Brasileirao 2021 at Maracana Stadium at Maracana Stadium on November 30, 2021 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)
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What Will Gabriel Barbosa Add To Aston Villa’s Team?

Barbosa has proven his value as an unforgiving finisher in the final third last season. He excels at creating a yard of space for himself to get a few shots in on-target. The 17-time Brazil international can even orchestrate a few decent chances for others around him and usually works his socks off when running the channels in the opposition half. He usually operates as a centre-forward but is versatile enough to fill in as a right-sided wide player if needed.

A striker of Barbosa’s attacking prowess will undoubtedly be an excellent acquisition for the Villans if they can devise a way to get a deal done for him this winter.

The Flamengo whizkid will add a lot of goals and dynamism to Steven Gerrard‘s attack and could go on to form a lethal attacking partnership with Ollie Watkins at Villa Park in the coming seasons.

At 25, Barbosa’s best years are ahead of him, so Gerrard can expect him to make an immediate impact if he can lure the talented forward to the West Midlands club during the January transfer period.

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