Huddersfield’s Terence Kongolo is the latest defender to be linked with a move to Villa Park.
Words by Mark Jirobe | @VillaMarkPGh
There are now less than 30 days to complete business before preseason arrives for Aston Villa. Within that space of time, Villa supporters are wishing, hoping and relying on the club to make smart and sound decisions for the clubs return to the Premier League. All the while, supporters are clamouring for certain players to come in, yet Aston Villa seem to be in a position where they will not be pigeonholed by other clubs inflating transfer valuations.
There is a time to spend wisely and there is a time to spend violently in the modern game of football. Villa are, at present day, set up to be a club who spend sums of money in a patient and well thought manner. Bournemouth seem to be standing steadfast on demanding an inflated price for Villa fan favorite Tyrone Mings, after the defender had a very successful spell with the Claret & Blue. In the event that Villa stay true to their perceived plan of healthy business decisions, they may wind up getting a better defender in the long run if Mings becomes unavailable for one reason or another.
Huddersfield Town defender Terence Kongolo was a bright light in an otherwise bang average team last season and is now supposedly on the radar of Aston Villa & Watford. The 25 year old is very capable of playing centre-back as well as left back; the former being a position where Villa need depth badly before the start of the season. Villa manager Dean Smith seems to enjoy and appreciate players who can be a jack-of-all-trades across the defensive third of the pitch.
The former Monaco player has been capped internationally for the Netherlands on four occasions. Kongolo also started 32 games for Huddersfield Town last season and finished the season with 65 interceptions, 74 total tackles and 97 clearances. Kongolo would benefit from being around a better core group of players than what was surrounding him at Huddersfield, as his defensive capabilities are already quite good. It seems as thought the tiny details of the game are what Kongolo needs to work on most.
His average match rating last season from the centre-back position isn’t much to look at, a 6.45 rating through 24 games. Taking into account batterings from the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City, Kongolo did put on some very promising performances for The Terriers. Kongolo also featured at left-back on eight occasions for an average match rating of 6.99 and scoring one goal. A 78% total passing success for the season signifies that Kongolo could use with some improvement in that area of his game. Make no mistake, Huddersfield were set up and prepared for a relegation fight last season in the Premier League. It was a very common occurrence to see The Terriers playing with 10 men behind the ball, in an attempt to play a ‘defence-first/counter-second’ brand of football. Dean Smith and the coaching staff at Aston Villa have spoken out about how that is not in the plans as the Midlands club prepares for life in the Premier League, and Kongolo could see an even greater up-tick in form under a new tactical approach.
The clock is ticking loudly at Aston Villa in terms of getting more than a few players in the door. Kongolo would be a steady and smart piece of business if the price is fair and the player wants to continue playing in the Premier League. It is being widely reported that Huddersfield would want somewhere in the region of 17 million pounds for the staunch defender: a fee that Villa wouldn’t mind forking over for the right player.