Ashley Young Signs New Villa Deal
As MOMS expected, Ashley Young has signed a new contract as soon as he arrived at Bodymoor Heath for the start of Aston Villa’s preseason today.
Despite his name appearing on the release list three weeks ago and half of Villa Twitter saying goodbye to him, MOMS did say at the time, that you should expect him to stay, as Steven Gerrard had suggested as much at the end of the season and there was no ‘goodbye’ announcement from the club ala Conor Hourihane.
“When I spoke to the manager towards the end of the season, he told me what he thought about me and that he wanted me to stay. He was a massive factor,” admitted Young, in his in-house interview, after signing a new deal.
Young, who turns 37-years-old this weekend, returned to the club last summer for a second spell, after successful periods with Manchester United and Inter Milan, and will now remain at Villa Park until the end of the 2022/23 campaign.
Young made a useful contribution of 24 appearances for Villa last season with 14 of those coming off the bench. With the increase to five substitutes allowed next season in the Premier League, the prospect of having him around as a utility player off the bench, was always likely to persuade Villa to give him a further season deal.
Adding a trusted and experienced head to his matchday squad is certainly appealing for Gerrard, who has previously highlighted the youthful nature and inexperience of Villa’s matchday squad, which has been one of the youngest in recent Premier League seasons.
Getting in the likes of Philippe Coutinho and Diego Carlos also had an element of fusing a bit more experience into the team for Gerrard.
Steven Gerrard Ambition
Young admits last season was a bit of mixed bag transitional season, but adds that Gerrard’s ambition is helping to keep him from retiring.
“I got to know the staff and the players really well last season, and I wasn’t ready to go into retirement just yet,” said Young.
“I’ve loved every minute of it. It’s been a good journey, a bit up and down last season but when a new manager comes in halfway through the season it’s going to be tough.
“It was tough at times but we had good times as well and that was a factor in it. His ambition is to get us back into Europe, where I believe the Club should be.”