Unai Emery has been one of the most esteemed managers of the modern era, to little fanfare given that much of his managerial success has come in competitions like the Europa League and Ligue 1. But Emery is yet to truly fail in a managerial role, and looks prepared to only continue his incredible reputation at Aston Villa. When he took over from Steven Gerrard, Villa were hovering around the relegation zone, desperately trying to stay afloat. Now they've attained four wins from their last six matches, in a robust 4-4-2 system that has dragged them all the way toward the top ten. Here is our analysis of how Emery has achieved so much success in his early days at Villa Park.
Following a Premier League campaign that featured his first two starts for Aston Villa, the young Lion has utilised the UEFA Under-19 European Championships as an opportunity to stake his claim for a spot in Steven Gerrard's first team squad next season. If not for Gerrard's team, there may even be a chance for a loan move to develop his trade, before the inevitable moment in which he will become an elite level Premier League midfielder.
Steven Gerrard's recruitment team have been extremely busy in the first few months under his leadership. From being one of the greatest footballers of his generation and a man with an ever-growing reputation, Gerrard provides a massive pull-power, securing the services of Philippe Coutinho in his first month at the club. Now preceding an underwhelming 14th place finish in the league last season, the Villains have pinpointed the exact areas of the side that need improving. We've already seen the permanent additions of Philippe Coutinho, Robin Olsen, Boubacar Kamara and Diego Carlos, taking the rest of the Premier League by storm. The window only officially opened for business on June 10th, but the early business from Gerrard's men arrows toward an exhilarating season in store for Villa Park's supporters.
We're now two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, and the transfer landscape is starting to return to some sense of normality. Despite that, no one expected the 2022 January window to be busy for any club not nicknamed after a highly intelligent black and white bird. But by the time February rolled around, the 2022 January window turned out to be one of the most exhilarating affairs since COVID hit the football market. Unfortunately for many top quality stars, that only resulted in places lost, broken promises and newfound roles on the bench. Without warning, some of the Premier League's most in-form stars suddenly dropped out of the team, only increasing the intrigue of all that happened earlier this year. So with that, today, we take a look at 6 Premier League stars who lost their place this season to little fault of their own.
Earlier this month, Aston Villa agreed to a stunning season-long loan deal with Barcelona to enjoy the services of Coutinho, with an option to buy for a reported £33.5 million. The deal seems to be a perfect platform for the Brazilian to get his career back on track, while also adding a different dimension to Gerrard's squad in the process. Here is our review on what Philippe Coutinho will bring to Aston Villa, and the betting odds of the former Liverpool man achieving success with his new club.
Gerrard remains a relatively inexperienced manager, but with a clear sense of tactical knowhow, the former Liverpool legend appears to be long for this world. Gerrard's won four from his first ten in charge, and added his first draw to the mix this past weekend against Manchester United with an extraordinary comeback. New additions in Lucas Digne and Philippe Coutinho have also entered the frame, providing the perfect time to take a look at how Gerrard has settled into life at Villa Park so far. Here is our tactical analysis of Steven Gerrard's Aston Villa in 2021-22.
In this jam-packed episode John and Declan are joined by Ziming Gao to discuss the possibility of the Premier League pressing pause on their season, as COVID rears its ugly head. As the weekend draws closer and games still haven't been cancelled, the lads break down what's to come in this weekend's match-ups, and they even recap the midweek events. All of that and a whole lot more in this episode!
In this jam-packed episode, John and Declan talk about whether Arteta and Hasenhuttl should freshen up their job applications, if a Chelsea collapse is imminent, and how the Hammers will cope with only 2 healthy centre-backs. The boys then get into a debate about just how much a chance Villa have in their visit to the Merseyside, singing the praises of Steven Gerrard and his start to life at his new club. Submit any questions for the show to themastermindsite.com/contact.
This week on a special combo review and preview podcast, John and Declan are joined again by Brennan McCaffray to talk about the Merseyside derby, United's win against Arsenal, and the London derby between Chelsea and West Ham this weekend!
On this special midweek episode of the Longball podcast, John is over the moon with Rangnick's announcement and United's performance against Chelsea. Meanwhile, Declan is concerned about the Hammers' recent run of form, and the boys try and get to the bottom of what's gone wrong with Everton this season ahead of their clash with Liverpool. All of that and a whole lot more on this special episode of the Longball Premier League Preview Show. Submit any questions for the show to themastermindsite.com/contact.
On this week's Longball Preview Show, John is over the moon as United appoint Ralf Rangnick as interim manager. John is without Declan this week, but he's joined by Bundesliga Weekly's Brandon Wallis to discuss all things Crystal Palace and their transformation this season; the Newcastle-Arsenal clash and Chelsea vs Manchester United. Follow the show and beyond via @mastermindsite on social media.
This week John and Declan are joined by Gooner fanatic Brennan McCaffray to talk about Arsenal's rise from the ashes under Arteta, set to face Liverpool this weekend in a fiery affair. The lads also give their takes on Steven Gerrard and Dean Smith's arrivals back to the Prem with new clubs, and the battle of the tacticians this weekend as Bielsa and Conte face off. All of that and a whole lot more on this week's episode!
On this episode of The Longball Premier League Preview Show, John and Declan are joined by Aston Villa reporter for Birmingham Live, Ashley Preece as they fawn over the Villains' signing of Emi Buendia, determine whether or not Villa can qualify for Europe this season, and discuss the latest in all things Jack Grealish.