It has been a long time since Aston Villa have had a week as good as this past one.
New signing Carles Gil immediately endeared himself to Villa fans with a special long-range effort to see the club over an FA Cup banana skin with Bournemouth, key midfielder Fabian Delph has agreed a contract extension and now Scott Sinclair has arrived on loan from Manchester City.
The loan market has been good to Villa in January in recent years. Kyle Walker joined in 2011 and provided some much needed attacking input from full-back in replacing Carlos Cuellar.
Robbie Keane provided some absent link play in the final third when arriving from LA Galaxy the following year and then 12 months ago Ryan Bertrand came in from Chelsea to help stem the flow of chances that Villa were conceding down their left side.
Villa’s record of 11 goals through the opening 22 matches is emphatically the worst in the division and Joe Cole is the only one of their 10 midfielders to have contributed a Premier League goal thus far.
It is fairly obvious that Paul Lambert requires not only more goals, but also more attacking threat from his midfielders.
Gil has showcased that he is capable of offering this down Villa’s right and now the loan capture of Sinclair potentially offers something slightly different down the left.
Lambert has predominantly selected Andi Weimann and Gabby Agbonlahor in the wide areas so far this season, with Weimann hard working, but guilty of breaking down numerous attacking moves with a poor pass.
Agbonlahor is also over reliant on his pace and struggles to make an impact when not given space to run into.
Gil offers a touch more flair and composure in possession and despite his goal against Bournemouth, his assets are more creative to supply the final pass to encourage Christian Benteke to replicate his scoring runs of previous campaigns.
Sinclair is far more direct, willing to take on defenders and get shots in on goal. Villa are the only team not to score from outside the penalty box this season – expect the former Swansea wide-man to end this dismal record.
It is 7/1 that Sinclair nets at any time in the 90 minutes in Villa’s next Premier League match away at Arsenal.
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