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2019-2020 Player Preview: Keinan Davis

He isn’t the first name on the teamsheet — but the forward has a role to play

Shrewsbury Town v Aston Villa - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by James Baylis - AMA/Getty Images

Two years ago — there would have been no place for a player like Keinan Davis — a forward who is better suited to have a 10 assist season than one where he bags 10 goals. That team was built on the idea that individuals can create goals on their own. The Dean Smith plan is more of a team game and that is where Keinan Davis can play a role.

When the 21-year-old was called on to start in 2017, because he was really the only option because of injury — he made a good showing. He can hold the ball up and spread passes to running midfielders and wingers. He clearly needs to work on his finishing — but if he gets on the pitch he should continue to play to his strengths.

One big advantage this year — he gets watch and work with a physically similar player like Wesley. That can only help Davis’ development - the other thing he needs is game time though — and it is not clear where Smith is going to put Davis on the depth chart. Regardless — barring a late loan — Davis appears to be with the first team this year and hopefully he can take advantage of any time he is given on the pitch. There is a quality player in there — but Villa (and Davis) need to develop it.