Aston Villa have had defensive issues all season long with a few fit defenders, but now it’s getting worse. Injuries galore means Dean Smith is stuck with a handful of players that have to start every game right now, or does it?
One option that might be used by Smith is an opportunity for some of Villa’s brightest young talents. Men like Jacob Bedeau and Easah Suliman have impressed for the U23s over the past few years. They would have been striving to be ready when their chance came. With Suliman recalled from a loan spell at FC Emmen ,why shouldn’t it be now?
Many people at this point would be saying “The games are too important” or “It’s too much of a risk” but why should that matter?
If they are good enough, they are old enough.
That’s how it went for previous stars. Would Gabby Agbonlahor have been given the chance at the end of the 2005/06 season if injuries and form didn’t come into it? Would we have seen the likes of Lee Hendrie, Gareth Barry or Marc Albrighton have the careers they have had if they weren’t given an opportunity?
I get that it is a risk but you have to have faith in the system. Have faith in the youth coaches. Have faith in the players.
If not, what happens to the young players? We will see a repeat of what happened to Barry Bannan amongst others. He was good enough, as he has proved since, but wasn’t given a chance. Gary Cahill is another example of Villa’s youth prospects finding success elsewhere because first team opportunities were scarce.
If Dean Smith thinks they aren’t good enough, that’s fair enough but if he doesn’t want to take a chance on them, it’s not fair on them.