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Emi Buendia set to miss Aston Villa’s Premier League opener

Aston Villa could be missing one of their star attackers for their Premier League opener against Bournemouth this afternoon… 

What’s the word?

According to Birmingham Live, Emi Buendia was set to be assessed yesterday after picking up a thigh injury during Villa’s behind-closed-doors friendly against Fulham. Having only returned to full training on Thursday, he remains unlikely to have a place in Steven Gerrard’s starting XI today.

The manager said of the Argentine’s injury on Friday: “He trained for the first time yesterday (Thursday) for the first time in a week. He got an injury in the behind-closed-doors game with Fulham which was disappointing because he was in a right positive place off the back of the Australian tour.

“I’m hoping he’s had no feelings from yesterday’s session because he trained with the group. We’ll analyse that situation tomorrow (Saturday). But, yeah, he’s had a minor setback from his pre-season preparation.”

Gerrard will be frustrated

Although he may have had a less-than-smooth return to Premier League football in 2021/22 amid some questioning of his performances, Buendia did impress at times throughout a tumultuous campaign for Villa.

He could certainly have proved to be the danger man to unlock what will likely be a stubborn Cherries defence, but he seems destined to miss out as the campaign gets underway.

Who can replace Emi Buendia in the Aston Villa starting lineup?

Bertrand Traore

Bertrand Traore

Leon Bailey

Leon Bailey

Anwar El Ghazi

Anwar El Ghazi

With four goals and six assists across 35 league appearances last term, it is a shame to see such a reliable figure ruled out so early on in the season.

There was hope around Villa Park that the upcoming campaign would be the one when the 25-year-old recaptures his form from the Championship season before last, when he recorded an astounding 15 goals and 17 assists for Norwich.

That’s all the more so after Gerrard’s glowing appraisal of the Argentine in January, when the Villa boss said: “We’ve certainly seen that explosion. We believe he’s had a fantastic month (in January). All the players needed time to adapt to us and the way we want to play.

“The good thing for Emi is we believe this style, shape and what we’re trying to do is tailormade for him and his own style. We feel it’s a really good match.”

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David Ginola at Aston Villa

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In a system supposedly made for Buendia, this could be the year that he establishes himself as an exceptional Premier League player.

With 1.4 key passes per game and eight big chances created last season, hopefully with the summer additions at Villa Park these sorts of chances can be converted, therefore improving Buendia’s returns in the final third.

Although he’ll be missed today, this season as a whole could be a special one for the £75k-per-week maestro. Gerrard will nevertheless be frustrated to see his chief creator of last term ruled out for the trip to the south coast this afternoon.

Article title: Emi Buendia set to miss Aston Villa’s Premier League opener

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