Gabriel Agbonlahor thinks that one Aston Villa target would not be guaranteed a place in Dean Smith’s starting line-up if he moved to Villa Park this summer…
Agbonlahor has said that he would not pick reported target Harry Winks over any of the club’s current midfield options. Villa are reportedly keen on a deal for Winks, who is valued at £30m by Tottenham, and Agbonlahor believes John McGinn, Douglas Luiz and Marvelous Nakamba would be ahead of him.
“I think Winks is a good player.
“But we can’t underestimate the talent we’ve got in midfield already.
“Winks would be a great signing but I wouldn’t pick Winks before John McGinn, Douglas Luiz or Marvelous Nakamba.
“Just because he’s a good player it doesn’t mean he’s guaranteed to get into the team.”
Villa fans would be fuming if the club decided to spend £30m on a player who would be the fourth choice in his position. Agbonlahor believes that he would be the fourth-best central midfielder at Smith’s disposal and, if that is the case, NSWE would be heading for a disaster by bringing him to Villa Park.
Winks averaged a WhoScored rating of 6.37 in the Premier League for Spurs last term. McGinn, Nakamba and Luiz all managed better scores for Villa, with all three players hitting 6.52 or higher. This suggests that Agbonlahor’s assessment of where he would fit within the squad is accurate and that Winks would not arrive as a guaranteed starter as he has not shown that he is a sizeable upgrade on the existing options in that area of the pitch.
Former Tottenham defender Graham Roberts offered a scathing verdict on Winks last month, calling him “Mr Conserative” and claiming that he is now an average player.
“He’s gone Mr Conservative, he plays simple, and if I don’t give the ball away, I’m a great player.
“You’re not, he’s become an average player, and that’s being fair.”
Winks has a career average of 0.5 key passes per game, whilst completing 90% of his passes – including 2.3 long passes per game. This aligns with Roberts comments about him being ‘Mr Conservative’, as he is completing a high percentage of his passes without taking many chances or attempting a significant amount of longer balls to open up defences.
Therefore, NSWE must avoiding making a grave error and should retract their interest in Winks. Instead, they should look to sign a player who is able to take up a starting spot and improve Smith’s team, as the supporters would be left livid if £30m was wasted on a reserve option.