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Elphick to try and work his promotion magic again as captain

In his four years as captain at Bournemouth, Tommy Elphick steered his side to two promotions and Premier League survival. Can the new Villa skipper deliver similar success at B6?

Aston Villa v Middlesbrough - Pre-Season Friendly
Tommy Elphick of Villa in action during the pre- season friendly between Aston Villa and Middlesbrough at Villa Park on July 30, 2016 in Birmingham, England.
Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

For the second straight year, Aston Villa will walk out on the opening day with a new signing wearing the captain’s armband.

Hopefully the whole thing goes well past that first match this year.

Tommy Elphick, signed from Bournemouth earlier this summer, will serve as Villa’s captain in the 2016/17 campaign, which all snark aside is a pretty good move. In fact, this isn’t the first time Elphick’s been named captain of a side he just joined: When he moved to Bournemouth in 2012, the Cherries moved swiftly to name him captain ahead of the League One season. Under his leadership, they won promotion to the Championship that year, and two years later moved into the top flight.

While Elphick only made 12 Premier League appearances last year, he was an ever-present in Bournemouth’s promotion-winning team the year before, appearing in all 46 matches.

Villa have signed a proven leader and proven captain, especially at this level. So while Elphick hasn’t been here more than a couple months, this was really a no-brainer move for Roberto Di Matteo.