Don’t blink - a fourth central defender has joined Aston Villa this summer.
Following Kortney Hause, Tyrone Mings and Ezri Konsa — this time Aston Villa reached into France to grab Bjorn Engels from Stade Reims. The fee is reported to be in the region of £9m. Engels had been at loan at Reims last season from Olympiakos with that deal turning permanent this summer. A quick profit.
Engels is a big man at the back standing 6’3”/1.94m. The 24-year-old came through the the academy at Club Brugge in Belgium and has two appearances (and a goal) for the Belgium U21 team. From a quick online bit of research — he has impressive durability appearing in 35 matches in a row last year in France. Engels only picked up four yellow cards across the campaign which is just like a typical month for John McGinn.
Engles joins the other ‘new’ defensive transfers of Mings (who isn’t really new), Hause (ditto), and Konsa (who is new but worked under Dean Smith in the past). The four with James Chester — should be enough to make Dean Smith confident that no one will have to play out of position in the center of defense this year. Five natural CBs: oh, what a feeling!
For those of you worried about ‘Pulling a Fulham’ — go read this. Seriously read it.