What’s Cameron Archer’s Destiny in 2022/23?
The past 48 hours have seen several fresh links being made to Cameron Archer with the likes of Rangers, Middlesbrough, Watford and Preston North linked. It’s no secret that Archer has long been on the radar of several clubs for a while now. Preston North boss Ryan Lowe admitted as much, after he secured the Villa’s striker’s services for a loan spell last season.
“I’ve been monitoring Cameron Archer for a while now. He’s a natural goalscorer who I’m really excited to work with,” said Lowe. “There were several clubs after him chasing his signature but we’re the privileged ones to be able to take him.”
Last season was certainly a break out season for Archer, as he impressed on every stage he found himself on.
On his first senior start, he scored a hat-trick for the Villa first team in the League Cup in a 6-0 win over Barrow, before adding six goals for the Villa U-21’s in the Papa John’s Trophy against EFL teams. More recently, he’s scored three in two appearances for the England Under-21’s.
Cameron Archer’s Aston Villa Contract
At the end of 2021, the 20-year-old striker signed a new contract at Villa until 2025, very much indicating that Villa were serious about the young striker.
The contract was Gerrard’s first direct course of action in the striker’s development, after the youngster has been with Villa since the age of eight-years-old. The second was to get him some decent level game time to boast his confidence and set him up for his involvement in Villa’s preseason leading up to the 2022/23 season.
Gerrard said as much, a couple of months ago, when he was asked about his Archer plans.
Gerrard’s Archer Plan
“Ryan Lowe phoned me two days ago and asked for him back next season,” said Gerrard.
“I told him to tell (chairman) Peter Ridsdale to get his naughts out if he’s wanting him on a full-time basis. I also said that he won’t be available for a loan because the idea of the loan is to give him some experience to get him back in the group and to have a positive pre-season.”
While there has been talk about Villa looking to get another striker in, they would have to pay serious money to get any upgrades on Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings. You’d also think the duo will improve on their efforts of last season too, with both being towards the top of the tree, in terms of English strikers.
“I want more forward options in the No 9 position, if you like,” confirmed Gerrard. “So we’ll analyse Cam in pre-season and we’ll make the decision from there. He’s a big, bright prospect here…but everyone wants Cam Archer and good players cost an awful lot of money.”
It’s unlikely a Championship team who would currently be able to match the kind of fee needed to prise Archer away from Villa, while he’s not experienced and proven enough for a Premier League rival to fork out for him.
Naturally, a lot of hype on social media of Archer’s efforts so far is built on clips of Archer’s goals and his exquisite finishing. Whether he makes it or not in Gerrard’s long-term plans will be down to his complete game and what he can bring to the team consistently at the top level.
Is he the complete package to play as a lone striker in Villa’s system against Premier League opposition? Has he the game to link up with the likes of Coutinho and Buendia?
That is the unknown quantity at the moment.
As well as his finishing, which for MOMS money is more natural than the likes of former impressive young Villa prodigies like Gabby Agbonlahor, Darius Vassell and the Moore brothers, when they were his age, Archer has both speed and strength too.
In the immediate future, with substitutes being increased to five in the Premier League, with his opportunist sharp-shooting, he’ll definitely has the potential to be a legitimate impact sub from the bench in the forthcoming season. Then, of course, there’s the League Cup, which he already knows a thing or two about, and should start in Villa’s initial fixtures in the competition.
There’s definitely a pathway there for Cameron Archer in the Villa team. He also has the advantage of having a manager who’ll know how to blood him, having witnessed first-hand the rise of Michael Owen as a teenager in the Liverpool ranks.
With a decent preseason, Archer will be going nowhere. So, hopefully that’s at least some transfer rumour clickbait you can ignore outright.