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Aston Villa could have Diego Carlos heir in Josh Feeney

Aston Villa have invested heavily in the playing squad over the last few summers, with Steven Gerrard having had the chance to make his own mark over the most recent summer.

Arguably his marquee signing was to tempt Diego Carlos to Villa Park, with expectations of him being the domineering centre-back to lead them up the Premier League table.

Should Aston Villa give Josh Feeney a chance?





However, disaster struck just two games in as he ruptured his Achilles against Everton, ruling him out for the foreseeable future.

It has led to a long-term recall for Tyrone Mings alongside Ezri Konsa but leaves them incredibly light at the back now.

Gerrard might have to call upon the youth squad to find added depth, and in there he could actually find an heir to the 29-year-old Brazilian.

One such prodigy is Josh Feeney, who seems to have all the hallmarks of a really impressive centre-back.

The 17-year-old stands at an outstanding 6 foot 3 and has already captained the England under-18s side on numerous occasions.

 There is a reason why BirminghamLive reporter Ashley Preece labelled him “highly-rated”.

Mature beyond his years, he has even been called up to Villa’s U23 side and has one goal in his opening two appearances this season in the Premier League 2.

Last season was when he truly made the step up to this level, featuring just three times in the under-18s Premier League before making 18 appearances in the higher age group.

Already standing way above Carlos’ 6-foot frame, he clearly has the physical attributes to compete with the former Sevilla defender.

Last season in La Liga he averaged 1.0 tackles and a mammoth 3.5 clearances per game, which was impressive as he led his side to a fourth-placed finish.

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David Ginola at Aston Villa

First up, who did Aston Villa sign David Ginola from in 2000?

He was instrumental, so it makes his freak injury even more frustrating.

However, with the lack of depth, it could now present a fine opportunity to slowly move Feeney up through that last step to senior football.

Blessed with incredible height, and clearly a threat from set pieces too, this miserable period could be the marking of a long-term successor to Carlos birthed through his own injury.