Aston Villa: £25m star could be 'like new signing' for Gerrard at Villa Park

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Aston Villa winger Leon Bailey could be like a new signing for Steven Gerrard next season, according to Pete O’Rourke.

The Jamaica international signed for £25m last summer, but injuries restricted him to fewer than 800 minutes in his debut campaign.

What’s the latest news involving Bailey?

Having been directly involved in 65 goals across four full seasons for Bayer Leverkusen, Villa fans were expectant upon following his arrive in the Midlands.

Bailey marked his Premier League debut with an assist, before scoring his first top-flight goal on his Villa Park bow against Everton. Another assist against Arsenal soon after meant the attacker had chipped in with three goal contributions in his first four appearances.

GiveMeSport The Verdict
GiveMeSport The Verdict

But constant muscle injuries saw Bailey end up missing more than 15 games, which ultimately led to him starting just seven times in the Premier League.

However, Bailey is fit and available once again and made the perfect start to pre-season when he scored the opener in Villa’s friendly against Walsall last weekend.

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And O’Rourke reckons that he could prove like a new signing for Gerrard, who’s yet to recruit any wide players this window.

What did O’Rourke say about Bailey?

He told GIVEMESPORT: “Leon Bailey did arrive with a lot of expectation on his shoulders after that big-money move from Bayer Leverkusen.

“Fitness issues prevented Villa fans from seeing the best of him, but I’m sure he will be hungry to prove a point this season and can show he can be a top performer for Aston Villa because he’s definitely got it in him, and he could almost be like a new signing for Villa if he goes and hits the ground running.”

Will Bailey be a starter next season?

Villa aren’t exactly short of wide options, so Bailey will definitely have his work cut out to secure a regular starting place on the right.

But none of the players he’ll be competing against were exactly at their best last season, so he’ll know that a promising pre-season could land him a spot in Gerrard’s team.

Emiliano Buendia is likely to provide the stiffest competition, especially after finishing the campaign in the side, but he only managed four goals and six assists, which means he’ll also have to prove his worth.

Bertrand Traore is Villa’s other right-sided option, although he made just five appearances under Gerrard’s guidance, which means he’s unlikely to pose much threat to Bailey’s chances of starting.

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