Why should Aston Villa recall Tommy Elphick in January
Aston Villa’s underwhelming start to the season has put them in a position where every move towards making a change is vital. They are lying 17th in the Championship table, seven points behind the playoff spots.
Inconsistent performances have plagued them to a great extent. At times, they struggle to defend leads, and in other instances, scoring has been a problem.
The Birmingham-based club loaned centre-back Tommy Elphick out to Hull City before the end of the transfer window. To add to that, they couldn’t get another defender who can cover for the departure of the Englishman.
As a result, Villa have two first-team centre-backs in their squad – James Chester and Axel Tuanzebe, latter being on loan from Manchester United.
Mile Jedinak sometimes slots in but there is no one who can naturally play in that position on a regular basis. Hence, here’s why they should contemplate on the idea of bringing Elphick back during the January transfer window:
Elphick and Chester could be a solid duo
Tommy Elphick’s performance level at Hull has been close to phenomenal. The Tigers should consider themselves lucky that Aston Villa decided to loan the centre-back out and they got him. The 31-year-old has been commanding, secured and positionally very good under the tutelage of Nigel Adkins.
He has certainly bettered the Hull defence which got used to conceding goals at a canter. They have conceded 21 goals in 15 games, compared to Villa who have shipped 23 in the same time. The margin is small but the impact Elphick has had at the KCOM stadium couldn’t be more positive.
We all know the cliche in football that “attackers win you games, but proper defence wins you titles and helps you win games on a consistent basis.”
On that note, Dean Smith and his men should prioritise their efforts on getting the defensive side of things in the right place, build a base and then look to play expansive football on the other end of the pitch.
For that to happen, spending on a new centre-back in January would be a naive option since they have such a good option loaned out. Henceforth, Villa should be looking to bring Elphick back at Villa Park in January and partner him with James Chester to bring stability at the back.