By Peter Lynch

19th Mar, 2023 | 3:27pm

Unai Emery completely transforms Douglas Luiz at Aston Villa, he didn't do enough under Steven Gerrard

Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz has completely transformed his game under manager Unai Emery having struggled to shine under previous boss Steven Gerrard.

As relayed by Talk Villa, the Brazilian has scored two goals and registered four assists in 14 Premier League matches under Emery, compared to tallies of just one and one respectively in his 12 previous appearances.

Luiz scored Aston Villa’s opening goal in the 3-0 win over Bournemouth at Villa Paerk on Saturday (19 March), with Jacob Ramsey and Emiliano Buendia also on the scoresheet.

Luiz is delighted with his upturn in form since Emery joined the club, as quoted on the official Aston Villa website.

“Every game we can try and get better on the pitch,” said Luiz. “The goal is so important, for me and my season. I’m so happy, this season I make more assists, more goals. I’m so happy.”

And commenting on the midfielder’s feats away from his goals and assists, Talk Villa noted: “Influence goes beyond the numbers with his ability to dictate and control in midfield, but great to see his impact grow.”

Despite operating in a defensive midfield role, Luiz has really taken his attacking game to the next level. Emery has undoubtedly helped further that ambition to get forward, but the Brazilian has also taken it upon himself to up his numbers.

And he has done just that in recent times, with only striker Ollie Watkins registering more Premier League goals and assists for Aston Villa this season than Luiz. The former has 13, with the latter now on eight, according to Statman Dave.

Watkins has been the only real source of Aston Villa goals in recent times, with the striker undoubtedly glad to see his teammates relieving the burden against the Cherries.

Luiz has been linked with a move away from Villa Park [talkSPORT], but it is becoming clear why the club are increasingly desperate to keep hold of the midfielder.

According to Sofascore Brazil, the 24-year-old has the highest Sofascore (7.05) of all Aston Villa players in the Premier League this season.

From his 26 matches, he has made 34 decisive passes, 48 tackles, recovered 135 balls, and boasts a passing accuracy of 87%.

It isn’t just the midfielder’s goals and assists tallies that have risen under Emery, with three of Luiz’s four Premier League yellow cards this season coming under the Spaniard’s reign.

Such aggression is not to be overlooked, with the Villa squad lacking real fight and grit under their previous boss, with Luiz battling hard but importantly staying within the parameters of the law on the pitch.

In other Aston Villa news, the club could climb into the Europa League places if they sign the Premier League midfielder that Emery is “crazy” about.