Aston Villa are said to be in talks with Ashley Young over a new deal with reporter Fabrizio Romano revealing on Tuesday that there are “very good chances” the player will continue his stint in the Midlands.
At the age of 36, Young still has a lot to offer to a Premier League side who are looking to instil success as Villa seemingly are.
The sale of Matt Targett to Newcastle United has left the Villans short of depth at left full-back and with the majority of Young’s appearances coming in that position, it is a no-brainer to renew his contract.
Besides a winning mentality and stacks of experience, Young offers Villa boss Gerrard versatility, having played throughout seven different positions in the Premier League this season, featuring at; left-back, left midfield, left-wing, central midfield, attacking midfield, right midfield, and right-back – making at least one appearance in each of the aforementioned positions.
If you think of the smartest teams in the league, they have a utility man. For instance, Manchester City have Oleksandr Zinchenko and Liverpool have James Milner. Coincidentally, they both occupy the role of full-back and central midfield, a service that Young can offer to Villa.
Zinchenko has shown specifically just capable he is in those roles of late, occupying a left-sided position in Manchester City’s defence before starring for Ukraine in the middle of the park during the recent international fixtures.
As for Milner, he started out as a midfielder but like Young, has since transitioned into a consistent full-back at the elite level.
That kind of versatility is invaluable to a side and Gerrard will be aware of the “outstanding” Young’s impact on the squad, and as one of the few players in the team with genuine seniority too.
The £88k-per-week earner’s presence at the club is integral – particularly in helping the new signings to bed in – but more so, in terms of helping Villa to transition into a consistent top-six challenging team.