By Villa News Speaking to Dan Bardell

8th Jun, 2023 | 7:00pm

Ezri Konsa to have positional change at Aston Villa after 'ruthless' Ashley Young decision - Sky Sports journalist

We’re delighted to welcome Sky Sports journalist Dan Bardell as our exclusive Aston Villa columnist each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the club…

Aston Villa defender Ezri Konsa could shift to right-back at stages next season after the ruthless decision to part ways with Ashley Young, according to Dan Bardell.

The club confirmed that Young, 37, wouldn’t be offered a new contract for the upcoming campaign after playing 32 times in the 2022/23 season and helping Villa qualify for the Europa Conference League.

Throughout his two spells for the club, the Englishman amassed over 200 games in claret and blue.

Young’s departure leaves Matty Cash as the only first-team right-back at Emery’s disposal, with Kaine Kesler-Hayden also available from the academy ranks.

However, speaking exclusively to Villa News, Bardell admitted that despite the dearth at right-back, Emery might opt against signing a player in this position and instead bring in a high-quality centre-back.

“I think that throughout his time in Spain, Emery’s right-back would quite often be a centre-back by trade,” he said.

“So there is a chance that if they do get another high-level centre-back into the club this summer, you might see Konsa play some games at right-back because he has played there in the past as well.

“That wouldn’t surprise me, specifically in European games, if we saw Konsa at right-back.

“I wouldn’t automatically assume that with Young leaving that Villa will sign a right-back this summer, time will tell, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if they didn’t sign one and they concentrated on getting a high-level centre-half and shifting Konsa over to the right.

“I fully suspected that Young would stay and get another year, but it shows Emery can be ruthless.

“Emery has earned that trust now, and anything he does, the fans will be trusting and backing him.”

After the injury to Diego Carlos in the early stages of last season, Konsa enjoyed an extremely successful campaign alongside Tyrone Mings in the heart of Villa’s defence.

Despite these three players already fighting for just two spots, the club have been linked with a move for Villarreal centre-back Pau Torres this summer. [90min, 6 June]

In other Aston Villa news, the club could be set to receive an “unbelievable” cash prize.