By Villa News Speaking to Dan Bardell

22nd Aug, 2023 | 8:10am

Dan Bardell: Aston Villa cannot upgrade on Ollie Watkins, they are lucky to have him

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 cannot upgrade on Ollie Watkins who will score “a lot” of goals under Unai Emery this season, according to Dan Bardell.

While the 27-year-old is yet to get off the mark in the Premier League so far this season having faced Newcastle and Everton, he has been Villa Park’s most regular goalscorer for the last three seasons, totalling 40 league goals since moving to Birmingham.

While Villa have grown significantly as a club since promotion, Watkins has managed to keep up with the growing demands of the club and cement himself as the first-choice centre-forward. While numerous managers have come and gone, Watkins has continually proved why he deserves the position.

Bardell claims that while observers can be quick to criticise the former Brentford forward, he is a top-quality Premier League striker and, under the guise of Emery and the influx of new attacking talent at the club, continue to produce for Aston Villa.

Speaking exclusively to Villa News, Bardell said: “When Ollie Watkins doesn’t score in a game, people will come out and we need to upgrade.

“There is categorically not an upgrade on Ollie Watkins at Aston Villa. Villa are very lucky to have Watkins. He’s a high-level Premier League striker.

“Under Unai Emery this season, he will score a lot of goals.”

In other Aston Villa news, Dan Bardell shares his Monchi claim amid the Nicolo Zaniolo deal and fresh interest in a Sevilla full-back.