First Impressions of Aston Villa’s Preseason and Grealish Paranoia

Buendia to Watkins Link-Up Promise

In MOMS initial write-ups of Buendia’s transfer to Villa, the immediate interest of the signing was the potential link-up with Ollie Watkins, to help fully realise Watkin’s potential and generate opportunities for the Villa striker, through the middle of the park, whether from deeper positions or close link-up play.

As we saw from last season, Watkins certainly has the potential to be a 20-goal-a-season Premier League striker, but at times had to go out wide looking for the ball. With the addition of Buendia, can be concentrate more on being Villa’s predator.

During Norwich’s condemned 2019/20 Premier League season, Buendía’s link up with Teemu Pukki was surprisingly unrivaled, creating a league-high 23 chances for the Finn to finish. This contributed to his seven assists, impressive for a then 22-year-old in a struggling side. 

Villa’s trip to the Bescot instantly provided evidence of the potential of the Buendia-Watkins partnership, as Buendia set up both of Watkins’ first half goals.

It looks promising indeed.

My Old Man Young

Elsewhere, it looks like Ashley Young could provide an interesting triangle of opportunity on the left flank with Jack Grealish and Buendia, whether it be from fullback or as a winger. Of course, he’d have to displace Matt Targett first, who was perhaps Villa’s most improved performer last season.

Despite being 36-years-old now, from Young’s preseason starts already, it looks like he’ll be seeing a bit of action across the season.

The oddest thing perhaps is seeing Young’s transition into a fullback/wingback play out in a claret and blue shirt, having been accustomed to seeing him down the Villa wing, in his first term with the club.

Chill Pills

Meanwhile, Villa Twitter is in a daily rabid froth reacting to every ITK tweet about Jack Grealish’s future, while the player himself relaxes on holiday. Are chill pills needed by fans? Is there a threat of him going? Is there a better opportunity for the player at Villa?

Well, all of the above is discussed in the latest episode of the My Old Man Said podcast – episode 156.

New to the show is the reintroduction of Media Muppets in audio form. Amusingly, after dismissing John Terry being linked to the Swansea City job in the segment, 24 hours after it was recorded, Terry left Villa!

They say there’s a first time for everything, but surely Media Muppets can’t be wrong?


Listen Below

Episode 156 Credits

The first preseason games have taken place and the preparation for the 2021/22 Premier League season has begun in earnest. Here’s MOMS first impressions of what we’ve seen so far.

Also, we catch up on the latest Villa news, see what’s in the Media Muppets trough, then look at the Argentine madness and Italian green kit problems in Three Points.

The main part of the show looks at the Jack Grealish situation, the transfer picture and initial observations from the first two preseason games.

This episode of the My Old Man Said podcast is brought to you by Freetrade, the commission-free investing app.

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David Michael – @oldmansaid

Chris Budd – @BUDD_music

Phillip Shaw – @prsgame

My Old Man Said –

Editor/Producer – David Michael

Music – Philip Marten 


  1. Thank you John Terry for your help over the last three years. I fear for the team now you are not around. You will make a brilliant manager. Best wishes for the future.

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