Aston Villa opinion: Dean Smith should reignite interest in Leroy Fer
Earlier in January, the Daily Mail reported that Leroy Fer was very close to a move to Aston Villa with the 29-year-old among their top targets. However, the move fell apart at the last moment, with the Swansea City midfielder missing out after failing his medical.
The Birmingham Live has reported that it was not an issue with the wages but his injury record. Fer had injured his hamstring prior to the medical and Villa were concerned with just how long the 29-year-old would be out for.
They made a move for Tom Carroll and signed the midfielder on loan until the end of the season. However, Carroll injured himself barely a week into his spell with the club and it shows why Aston Villa should have waited for Leroy Fer instead.
While Carroll is talented in his own right, the experience and no-nonsense ability that Fer has would have suited the Lions. This season, they’ve missed that ability in central midfield.
The likes of Mile Jedinak, Glenn Whelan, Conor Hourihane and even Henri Lansbury are all struggling to produce the goods.
Only John McGinn and Jack Grealish have been lived up to the bill for Aston Villa in the midfield, and the latter has missed nearly 90 days of action due to injuries. That shows why the club needed someone like Fer in their side.
However, an injury to his hamstring has affected the midfielder, as he is yet to recover. Despite that, Fer remains a better midfielder than all but two out of the six midfielders that manager Dean Smith has at his disposal.
While the 29-year-old does his best work in central midfield, he has the technical skill and the creativity to play further forward if and when required. But it’s in central midfield that Fer’s attributes really shine, allowing the Swansea captain to dictate the game.
That’s something Villa have missed, with McGinn shining in an advanced box-to-box role for the club, which has left them without a maestro in the midfield. This is something that Leroy Fer excels at and why Aston Villa should really consider reigniting a move in the summer.
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