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Aston Villa: Gerrard must axe Douglas Luiz for Brighton clash

Having lost their two previous Premier League games 1-0 against Newcastle United and Watford, Aston Villa are back in action again this afternoon for their latest opportunity to put their poor run of form behind them with an away clash against Brighton & Hove Albion.

On the chalkboard

In terms of which players Villa manager Steven Gerrard could pick to be in his starting XI to take on the Seagulls, one figure that started the game against Watford that we feel shouldn’t be in the team on this occasion is Douglas Luiz.

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Before being replaced by Ollie Watkins after 58 minutes, the Brazilian had 32 touches of the ball, fewer than Danny Ings, and completed 27 passes but failed to have much of an attacking or defensive impact, making him somewhat of a passenger in the game and an easy option for Gerrard to take off in the second half.

Taking into account how the £31.5m-rated man had played the full 90 minutes in each of Villa’s eight previous league games, this could be a sign that the manager wanted to see how his team would fare without Luiz in it for a change.

With no key passes or clear shots at goal as well as winning just one of the four duels he was involved in while not making a single interception of clearance, the 23-year-old ultimately earned himself a rather indifferent overall match rating of 6.7/10, making him the second-lowest rated player in a Villa shirt that started the game according to SofaScore.

Having said after the Newcastle defeat that changes will need to be made going forward, Gerrard clearly felt the need to stick with Luiz in midfield to take on the Hornets.

However, with his performance in that game in mind, it could now be time for the Villa boss to take the midfielder, who is currently picking up a weekly wage of £52k-per-week according to Salary Sport, out of the team this afternoon.

Should Gerrard start Luiz against Brighton?

Yes

Yes

No

No

In addition to this, journalist Ashley Preece claimed that the former Manchester City figure was “Villa’s biggest issue” in the defeat at St. James’ Park, which suggests that the team may be better off not having Luiz start in today’s clash.

Moving forward, if Gerrard were to leave him out of the team today and they end up securing a much-needed victory, this could lead to the midfielder having a challenge on his hands to get back into the team.

In other news: Gerrard can finally axe rarely-seen Villa disaster with “sensational” £22.5m-rated gem – opinion

Article title: Aston Villa: Gerrard must axe Douglas Luiz for Brighton clash

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