Ezri Konsa Signs New Deal
Aston Villa have announced that Ezri Konsa has signed a new and improved five-year deal until 2026. The 23-year-old central defender has been one of the lynchpins of young talent at the club that has reinvigorated Villa’s fortunes, despite fielding starting line-ups that are on average the youngest in the Premier League (see below).
One of the reasons of Villa having a transfer policy that identifies ‘real’ young talent, as opposed to the cheap young talent of the Paul Lambert era, is the potential financial upside, if they leave the club in the future.
Konsa cost Villa circa £11m in the 2019 summer transfer window, which is top dollar for such a young centre back, but with Dean Smith’s experience with the player at Brentford, making it more of an educated risk, it’s business that after the development of Konsa this season, looks very sound indeed.
While the transfer market has been stagnant in the last year due to the Covid situation, you’d have thought Konsa’s market value would be at least already double/triple Villa’s initial investment.
No teams have reportedly shown firm interest in the player, so you have to be suspicious of the timing of the recent supposed paper talk interest from Spurs and Liverpool. Certainly the timing could be agent fed contract renewal leverage talk, although any player playing well will attract admirers.
Taking a step outside the claret and blue hype bubble for a second, at his age, any sane club would want to see at least another season of consistency from Konsa, before they’d drop any big money on such a player. Such a period of consistency and even improvement should see Konsa get into the England squad while he’s at Villa, potentially before the Qatar World Cup.
He’s very much at the start of what looks to be a promising career, which hopefully the highlights of will be at Villa.
The trio of Martinez, Konsa and Mings are very much the base of the spine of a Villa team that is still on an upward curve. With Mings recently extending his contract too, Villa now don’t have too many worries in the defensive department.
With Tom Heaton providing excellent back-up in the keeper position and decent enough coverage at centre back, Smith will be looking to strengthen the full-back department this summer, especially with the likes of Neil Taylor and Ahmed Elmohamady expected to leave at the end of this season due to expiring contracts.
Certainly in terms of improving the first XI next season, the new contract of Konsa is certainly a signal, that any big buys will be for further up the field.