By Pranav Shahaney

14th Nov, 2023 | 4:10pm

Ian Wright blown away by what he saw Aston Villa defender Ezri Konsa do recently

Ian Wright has been gushing over Aston Villa defender Ezri Konsa who has been called up to the England side by Gareth Southgate.

The 26-year-old has been delivering consistent performances regularly for Villa but has not gotten his recognition so far from the Three Lions manager but made headlines this time around after getting called up.

Konsa is yet to make his international debut but there is a feeling that it could happen at some stage in the coming days.

Speaking on the Wrighty’s House Podcast, Wright said at 15:58, “I’m really pleased with one of the inclusions in the England squad, because we were talking about it on this very podcast about his inclusion at some stage. Ezri Konsa.

“I was really pleased to see that inclusion. Speaking to Gareth [Southgate] when I was at the Burnley game a little while back, when they were playing against [Manchester] United, he was talking about the centre halves, Guehi, Levi Colwill and Ezri Konsa.

“To see him in there is a fantastic addition. For the last two seasons, Konsa has been absolutely fantastic. He’s very very good.”

Konsa has been exemplary in his pass completion, in comparison to centre-backs in Europe’s top five leagues.

According to FBref, his 91.9 per cent accuracy rate puts him in the 94th percentile – which is pretty remarkable given how competitive the Premier League is.

He also averages 0.29 take-ons per 90 minutes so this is clearly a player who’s not just comfortable at receiving and passing the ball, but also carrying it out of defence.

With Harry Maguire’s lack of game time for Manchester United, there could be an opening in Southgate’s team for John Stones’ partner for the upcoming Euros.

Colwill and Guehi have both not been all that impressive and if Konsa shines on the international stage and continues to deliver the kind of performances he has for his club, there’s nothing stopping him from making that spot his own.

He’s also averaging nearly three clearances per 90 minutes and 1.29 blocks so it’s not that he’s foregone the defensive side of his game.

Hopefully, Southgate utilises him well and ensures that he gets the same player that Emery is at Villa Park.

In other Aston Villa news, a rising star has given Unai Emery some food for thought and his Aston Villa debut will surely be on the horizon in the coming weeks.