Aston Villa probably didn’t need to sign another centre-back after bringing in Kortney Hause, Tyrone Mings and Ezri Konsa - but why not? Björn Engels is a talented centre-back and he wants to play the ‘right way’ - which means a lot of passing from his position and the occasional killer ball through to a sprinting winger. Engels, a new signing, was part of a mid-window spree by Villa’s transfer committee.
Stade de Reims managed to turn a quick profit on Engels after signing him following a loan from Olympiakos. Shortly after that deal - Reims shipped him off to the Villa.
It wasn’t a hastily done deal though - Villa Head Coach Dean Smith had been a fan of the player previously, and his scout report existed within Villa’s database. It’d be fair to say he’s been a mid-term target for the Villa.
Engels will be starting at the back for Villa from the first game of the season and honestly, he might not see the bench if he plays as well as he can. Tyrone Mings stole a lot of hearts last season, but Engels may have the higher ceiling. Mings has been impressive in his own right, so we should really get excited about Engels. One almost-legendary centre back in Tyrone has joined the club and now we have another who has the skillset to match that and even go further? Yes please.
A ball-playing centre-half, with loads of talent, on a fairly cheap deal? It couldn’t be the Villa, could it?