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Aston Villa: Nicolas Jackson could be Unai Emery’s Neymar

Unai Emery got his Aston Villa career off to a blinding start as he beat Manchester United 3-1 in his first Premier League match in charge last Sunday.

The club are now 14th in the table but could still head into the World Cup break level on points with the drop zone if results do not go their way next weekend.

Villa have not enjoyed an impressive start to the campaign, losing seven of their 14 matches, and Emery could use the upcoming January transfer window to bolster his squad.

One player Villa are reportedly looking at ahead of the market opening is Villarreal winger Nicolas Jackson, who worked with the Spanish coach earlier this season and last term.

Fellow Premier League sides Newcastle and Everton are also said to be keen on the gem but his pre-existing relationship with Emery could give the Villans the advantage in this particular race.

Does Emery need to add to his squad in January?





The Spanish head coach could unearth his next version of Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar at Villa Park by securing a deal to sign Jackson in January.

Reporter Ashley Preece recently described him as a player with “bags of potential” and talent scout Jacek Kulig claimed that the winger is known as “Neymar” in his home country of Senegal. 

In an article about Jackson for Kulig’s website, Harold Monteiro Macedo wrote: “He is an attacking midfielder who can also play one both right and left wing and as a striker. He is very good on the ball, good at dribbling and passing. He likes to carry the ball to create danger and create chances for his teammates.”

This suggests that the attacker, who has a £27m release clause, is similar to the Brazilian sensation in the sense that he can play in a multitude of roles across the frontline and is adept at moving past players with the ball at his feet, much like the PSG star – who has completed 4.3 dribbles per game across his career.

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David Ginola at Aston Villa

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

The Spanish tactician will already know all about the 30-year-old with Neymar featuring 30 times under Emery. During their spell together in Paris, the Brazil international scored a remarkable 28 goals and also registered 18 assists. It is far-fetched to suggest Villa’s latest transfer target could reach the same heights but it shows why the comparison is such an exciting one.

Jackson has shown signs of having the end product to match his phenomenal build-up play, scoring two goals and providing two assists, whilst creating four ‘big chances’ in eight La Liga starts for Villarreal this season. That comes after producing five goals and seven assists in 25 appearances in the Spanish third tier for the B team last term.

At the age of 21, the forward has plenty of time left on his hands to develop and improve his final ball and this means that he could grow into a more consistent and impactful winger with his contributions at the top end of the pitch.

Therefore, if the wing wizard can fulfil his undoubted potential, Emery could well be staring at his new version of Neymar. Exciting times.