Aston Villa midfielder Morgan Sanson faces a defining season at the club this year, according to journalist Luke Hatfield.
What did Hatfield say about Sanson?
After arriving in England back in January from Marseille for £15.5m, Sanson has failed to establish himself as a first-team regular at Villa.
Hatfield believes that the Frenchman will find it tough to break into Dean Smith’s starting XI given the options that Villa have at their disposal in the middle of the park. However, he is hopeful that Sanson can get his career back on track in what promises to be a make-or-break season for the 27-year-old.
Hatfield told GIVEMESPORT: “It’s a big old season for Morgan Sanson. Obviously, he joined in the winter transfer window, Villa acted early because he was originally a summer target. He was really unfortunate with injuries. Just the way things have panned out, I think he’s played fewer minutes than Danny Ings has over his Villa career which is pretty crazy when you think about it.
“Hopefully it doesn’t fizzle out for him because he came with a big reputation from France, and it’s always going to take a foreign player maybe a little longer to bed in, in the Premier League.
“But as I said, it’s a massive season for him now, because he’s got the likes of Jacob Ramsey to compete with, and with him putting in performances and then John McGinn obviously putting in really good performances as well, it’s going to be hard for him to work his way into that XI and Dean Smith’s thinking.”
What is Sanson’s record at Villa to date?
As Hatfield mentioned, Sanson’s progress at Villa Park has been badly disrupted by injuries, as he was limited to just nine Premier League appearances last term. Only three of those were starts, and he failed to register a single goal or assist for the team.
He did get his 2021/22 campaign up and running last month when he provided an assist in Villa’s 3-1 Carabao Cup win over Wycombe. Sanson is yet to feature for the side in the top-flight this season, though.
How Thomas Tuchel OUTCLASSED Nuno! Full tactical analysis on The Football Terrace…
Can Sanson resurrect his Villa career this season?
Right now, it seems that Sanson is no more than a fringe player in the Villa squad. Smith’s preferred midfield trio appears to be Douglas Luiz, John McGinn and Jacob Ramsey, and the former two are now two of the first names on the teamsheet when fit.
Ramsey has stepped up at the start of the season as well, so there is no reason for Smith to drop him at the moment. However, Ramsey is still only 20 years of age, and youngsters are prone to dips in form as they battle for consistency.
Therefore, his performance levels could tail off at some point this year, which may present Sanson with an opportunity to prove his worth. Whether he can take his chance or not could determine if he has a long-term future at Villa or not.