Jacob Ramsey Becomes the Second Villa Player to Miss Preseason
There’s no doubt that the level of excitement for Aston Villa supporters heading into the upcoming season is unmatched in the last decade or so. After demonstrating their potential under Unai Emery for the final half of last season, Villa have raised their expectations for the new season. There is a clear aim and appetite to finish even higher in the Premier League, and winning silverware is undoubtedly a target, with the Europa Conference League presenting a real opportunity.
Naturally, nothing is straight forward when it comes to Villa though.
England’s Bittersweet Triumph
England’s U21’s Euro win this summer was bittersweet from a Villa point of view. Jacob Ramsey and Cameron Archer both had good tournaments, but Ramsey’s injury (reported to be a broken metatarsal) will now see him out for over two months. The young midfielder was withdrawn in the 67th minute of England’s 1-0 win over Portugal in the quarter-finals due to his injury, caused from a stamp on his foot, earlier in the game.
Ramsey made a strong impression in the earlier rounds of the tournament, contributing with a goal and an assist. This performance was a continuation of his fine season for Aston Villa, where he scored six goals and provided seven assists, playing a crucial role in Villa’s qualification for Europe. It will be a big shame for Ramsey to miss the early matches, but he’ll be hoping that Villa can go deep into the competition under a manager, who is somewhat of an expert in such matters.
Although Villa has midfield depth, particularly with the acquisition of Youri Tielemans, Ramsey’s ability to effectively carry the ball forward is invaluable in pushing Villa up the pitch. Moreover, his well-timed runs often result in him finding himself in scoring positions, showcasing his ability to contribute with goals.
Alex Moreno Injury
Villa’s left-hand side was undoubtably its strongest, but now, Ramsey joins Alex Moreno on the sidelines. Moreno, for many, was one of the catalysts in moving Villa up a gear to help them with their charge to European qualification. He too will miss preseason after surgery and will also be hoping that Villa make the group stages of the Europa Conference League to see European action.
Villa do have more than adequate cover in Lucas Digne for Moreno and have variations to rejig their midfield in Ramsey’s absence (like McGinn playing on the left). That’s testament itself to the evolution of Villa’s squad into one that has genuine depth in most areas, so they should be able to cope with the duo being sidelined in the first few weeks of the season.
Currently, though, you would consider both to be starters, so Emery will be keen to get them back in his match day squad as soon as possible. If there is a silver lining though, it’s that Villa’s Head Coach knows the situation ahead of preseason, so he has plenty of time to hone his team in their absence.