Monday, November 19, 2007

Season Summaries--8. Aston Villa

8. Aston Villa (My preseason prediction: 7th)

Sometimes it seems like Martin O'Neill has the entire England U-21 team out on the field when Aston Villa plays; the varying and important roles Gabriel Agbonlahor, Ashley Young, Luke Moore, Scott Carson, Craig Gardner, and Curtis Davies all have could make anyone who wants to put a limit of foreign players in the Premiership happy.

The first four young English players I just mentioned have all the potential to be future stars for both club and country, especially Ashley Young, in my opinion. Young is extremely quick, can play on both wings, take free kicks, and score goals. Agbonlahor has 5 goals in 12 Premiership games this season, and his emergence as well as that of Luke Moore, combined with the presence of John Carew, has relegated big summer signing Marlon Harewood to simply an afterthought.

Villa were eliminated at home in the 3rd Round of the Carling Cup by Championship side Leicester City, which has probably been their biggest disappointment of the year to this point. They've lost only once in their last 7 Premiership games and have suffered just 3 defeats all year (two of which came against Manchester United and Liverpool). Scott Carson's permanent move from Liverpool will really be a boost to Villa for years to come, and with him in goal along with the stable of young English talent amongst the field players, Aston Villa have a side that will be a contender sooner rather than later.

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