By Villa News Speaking to Dan Bardell

13th Aug, 2023 | 4:10pm

'Clever' Finn Azaz contract extension 'no-lose' deal for Aston Villa, tipped for 'very successful career'

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 locking youngster Finn Azaz down to a new contract is “clever”, with the 22-year-old set to have a “successful career”, according to Dan Bardell.

The club announced (2 August) that Azaz had signed a new deal at Villa Park and was sent back to Plymouth Argyle on loan after he helped the Pilgrims get promoted to the Championship last season.

The former West Brom midfielder played a big role for Plymouth last season scoring eight goals and earning himself a call-up to the Republic of Ireland under-21 side.

Bardell claims that tying Azaz down to a new contract is smart as it protects what they consider to be a high-value asset after he’s “ticked every box” during his loan spells.

Speaking exclusively to Villa News, Bardell said: “I think Villa have been clever there. They’ve given him a new contract to protect some kind of value in him.

“He’s had a League Two loan, a League One loan and he’s done very well in both spells. He’s scored goals and he’s on the radar of the Republic of Ireland side at the moment to become a full international.

“His loan back to Plymouth in the Championship is excellent for Aston Villa and for him. I think it will be a successful loan spell and he’ll have a very successful career.

“It might not be at Villa, but what the club have done is protect his value. When the time comes for him to move on, they can command a fee.

“I predict that that’s the reason why they’ve given him the new contract. He’s ticked every box on every loan.

“There’s something about him as a player that I really like. It’s an interesting one to keep an eye on but it’s a no-lose situation for Villa.”

In other Aston Villa news, Ty Bracey has made a big claim about the ‘massive’ John McGinn’s season.