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Aston Villa 2017-18 player preview: Neil Taylor

Welsh defender offers solid defensive option on the left side (strong side)

Aston Villa v Norwich City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images

Steve Bruce, currently, has two very different options at left back. Jordan Amavi is obviously the flashy, quick, young and attack-minded option. January-arrival Neil Taylor is the no-nonsense, quiet, and solid pick. Neil Taylor is not going to make the highlight reel most matches — and that is ok — Taylor tallied six assists and no goals in his last 150 first team appearances in the Premier League and Championship matches — his only goal was while on international duty with Wales.

The 28-year-old is going to hold down the left flank and allow an attacking player (looking at you Green/Grealish) to carry on farther up field. That means he is going to have to create a partnership up the left side of the field and having a full preseason with Villa for the first time can only help that.

Now it must be said — Taylor’s importance to Aston Villa increases significantly if Jordan Amavi is able to find the exit (and pass the medical) because there is far less cover on the left side of defense than the right. But if he stays healthy — Taylor can do that job and Aston Villa needs players who can do just that.