By Peter Lynch

30th May, 2023 | 9:04pm

Aston Villa ace Douglas Luiz ‘massively improved’ under Unai Emery, Ian Wright blown away by attacking stats

Aston Villa have been simply sensational under Unai Emery, with the club securing Europan football under the guidance of their talented manager.

The club really have improved all over the pitch since he took over from Steven Gerrard in the dugout at Villa Park.

There were, of course, a few small bumps along the way, which were definitely expected, but overall the feeling at the club is one of huge delight and excitement.

They clinched seventh place in the Premier League table this season, with star midfielder Douglas Luiz fittingly scoring a key goal in the 2-1 win against Brighton on Sunday (28 May).

The Brazillian is thriving under Emery, and is enjoying the richest run of attacking form in his entire Villa career.

As discussed on BBC Match of the Day (28 May, 43m52s), Luiz recorded 10 goal involvements (five goals, five assists) in 25 matches under Emery.

It comes in stark contrast to his nine goal involvements (three goals, six assists) in 77 matches under Dean Smith, and four goal involvements (three goals, one assist) in 36 matches under Gerrard.

“I think Douglas Luiz is a very good example of somebody who has massively improved,” Wright said on Match of the Day. “He’s a good player as it is, but his numbers since he’s been under Unai Emery have been fantastic.

“This is what he’s added to his game. It’s proven to be very, very valuable for Villa. Before Unai got there it wasn’t really happening.”

Unfortunately for Villa and Emery, the season has been drawn to a close, with the club really going strong lately.

Luiz not only found the back of the net in the curtain closer against Brighton, but also defended admirably, making two tackles, one interception and one clearance, as per SofaScore.

The display helped him finish the season as his club’s highest-rated player, with a score of 7.10 [SofaScore].

Everyone associated with the club will be glad of a well-earned rest over the coming weeks, but one certainty is that they will all be raring to go once pre-season and more importantly European football comes calling.

In other Aston Villa news, an injury to one gem could derail Emery’s pre-season plans, with the manager certain to be worried.