Unhappy Youri Tielemans yet to impress Unai Emery at Aston Villa amid complaint behind Boubacar Kamara and Douglas Luiz roadblock
Youri Tielemans’ move to Aston Villa this summer isn’t working out how he had hopedso far as the Belgian is already unhappy with his playing time under Unai Emery.
The former Leicester City star arrived on a free transfer after the Foxes were relegated but has barely cracked 90 minutes total action in the Premier League across four appearances so far this season – 94 according to Transfermarkt – along with a couple of Europa Conference League outings.
Now, with the 26-year-old away on international duty he has expressed his dissatisfaction with the situation a revealed a complaint to the Villans boss, telling media as per DH les Sports: “This situation is not pleasant. I told the manager that I came to Villa to play. He understands me, but at the moment, he prefers to play with his two midfielders from last season.
“He told me that soon the matches will come one after the other and I will have more playing time. I know this answer doesn’t help me move forward, but what should I do?
“Whenever I have an opportunity, I want to take it. So far, I have started once, in the Conference League.”
The midfielders from last season are of course Boubacar Kamara and Douglas Luiz who have started in the middle for every league game so far this season, but with two wins and two losses Tielemans might be feeling justified in asking why he isn’t getting more minutes.
However, while his sample size is a small one it doesn’t necessarily suggest that he has been banging the door down to challenge the two incumbents with his time on the pitch, as his passing percentages the only area where he outstrips the other two.
According to WhoScored his overall rating (6.07) is lower than both Kamara (6.55) and Luiz (6.66) in the top flight thus far, while he hasn’t yet had a shot or won an arial duel to compare, although his pass completion percentage of 92.2% is top vs 87.5% for Kamara and 89.5% for Luiz.
FBRef stats from Opta show that he is most proficient in all three of short, medium and long passes, having misplaced only one of 38 short passes and one of five long ones, where as his French teammate has failed to complete six of his 11 long passes.
When it comes to defensive stats however he lags behind, having only attempted a single tackle in his time on the pitch and not won it, with Kamara winning six of seven and Luiz four of five.
Additionally Tielemans hasn’t made any interceptions yet compared to three for the Frenchman and two for the Brazilian, although he has matched Kamara’s and Luiz’s two blocked passes each, with the latter also adding two blocked shots.
Granted, it may be unfair to compare late minutes in games that were already decided, and a half in the opening day thrashing at Newcastle, with a series of starts from his teammates.
And having comfortably beaten two sides they would be expected to in Everton and Burnley but come off clearly second best to both Newcastle and Liverpool Tielemans might argue that those ahead of him aren’t exactly producing fireworks.
But statistically he hasn’t forced Emery’s hand either, and while the catch-22 for him might be that it requires a run in the team to get into a rhythm he presumably hasn’t walked right into that yet when the incumbents helped Aston Villa qualify for Europe last term while the ex-Leicester star’s side went down.