American forward Indiana Vassilev has joined Burton Albion on loan for the upcoming season.
Words: Mark Jirobe | @VillaMarkPGH
Indiana Vassilev has joined Burton Albion on a season-long loan, pending league approval. The 19 year old American forward featured for the Aston Villa first team back in January due to an injury crisis in the attacking areas.
The Georgia-born Vassilev seems to be very keen on his move to Burton, perhaps a sign that he has the right attitude to do what is necessary to break into the first team at Aston Villa in the future.
Speaking with the official Burton Albion website, Vassilev said of his loan move:
“I’m super happy to sign for Burton Albion and to give all I can for the club, I’m really excited about this opportunity. I’m a player who’ll work hard for the team and look to create for the team.
“I’ll do whatever the team needs – I’ll be the handyman! I’ve had a lot of good experience with the Aston Villa first team but we decided it’s time to test myself in another league.”
This specific move should suit a player like Vassilev very well. Villa have been doing all they can to instil damage control at an academy that hasn’t been great in the past number of years. Dispatching young talent like Vassilev to League One shouldn’t be seen as the player not being good enough for the aspirations of the club, but more so a more modern approach that will allow players time to properly develop.
Dean Smith has been very complimentary about Vassilev and his playing style during his short spell in the first-team back in January. The Villa gaffer waxed lyrical about the American, and sees a bright future for him:
“Sometimes when you give an opportunity to a young player they can sink or swim. He is certainly a swimmer. He has looked really good so far. You can always tell how the reaction is through the other players, in their relationships with them.
“You can see them all behind him. He goes in and puts a shift in for them. If you do that and have quality to add to it you will do alright in the dressing room.
“He’s got a goal scoring ability, he knows where the back of the net is, he knows what runs to make. Tactically he’s intelligent. Physically he’s impressive as well.”
Vassilev featured in four Premier League games, one FA Cup game & one Carabao Cup contest in the 2019-2020 season, a small audition of sorts to showcase the strengths of his game. While he didn’t find the back of the net in any of these games, Vassilev showed that he won’t back down against opposition such as Manchester United, Liverpool and Leicester City.
Best of luck to Indiana on his loan move to Burton Albion.