Aston Villa: Unai Emery tactical flexibility shown by reaction to Boubacar Kamara injury - Sky Sports journalist
We’re delighted to welcome Sky Sports and The Athletic’s Dan Bardell as our exclusive Aston Villa columnist each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the club…
Dan Bardell believes Unai Emery’s tactical flexibility at Aston Villa has been highlighted by his impressive reaction to the injury of influential midfielder Boubacar Kamara.
French international Kamara was subbed off mid-way through the 2-0 win against Chelsea with an ankle injury, with natural centre-back Calum Chambers coming on in his stead for a 45-minute cameo.
In the club’s three Premier League outings since Kamara’s injury, both John McGinn and Leander Dendoncker have filled this void in the middle of the park alongside Douglas Luiz.
Speaking exclusively to Villa News, Bardell admitted that Chambers’ ability to slot into midfield was a great example of Emery’s clear tactical framework, with the ex-Arsenal man a useful player due have at Villa due to his ability to play several positions.
He said: “It shows just how good Emery is, tactically, that Kamara going off against Chelsea and picking up an injury should have been a really bad thing for Villa, but in the end, Emery somehow manages to turn it into a positive.
“He has readjusted the shape, Chambers came in against Chelsea and did a good job helping to keep the clean sheet.
“In the case of Chambers, Emery is obviously so clear and concise in what he wants that players who haven’t played very much can come in, slip into the midfield and perform.
“But it will be interesting to see where he plays in the near future because he probably won’t get any games at centre-back because Konsa and Mings have got such a good partnership, and their back to their best, and Diego Carlos is obviously returning to fitness as well.
“Chambers is a useful player to have in the squad just by the virtue that he can play in multiple positions.”
According to injury expert Ben Dinnery, Kamara could be set to return from his ankle injury at the end of April ahead of the club’s late push for European football.
Aston Villa will look to continue their five-match winning streak in the Premier League when they travel to Brentford this Saturday (22 April).