Aston Villa are currently 16th in the Premier League standings after accumulating just 10 points in their first 11 games, following a bad run where they lost five consecutive games in the league since the beginning of October. The recent run has led to the sacking of manager Dean Smith, as Villa now look for a replacement for him during the international break.
Dean Smith used a back-three from Mings, Konsa, Tuanzebe, and Hause. In the last two games, he tried to shift to a back-four with Tuanzebe and Tyrone Mings as centre-backs. The back-four system reduced the goals conceded, but they lost both the games. The new replacement will have a job on his hands where he will have to make improvements both defensively and in the attack.
In this post, we will look at the defensive stats of the four centre-backs used by Dean Smith in this Premier League season.
The above viz is the defensive dashboard of Kortney Hause for Aston Villa in the Premier League this season. The black line in the viz shows the average of a particular stat for all players in the league. He has had less success in defensive actions but has been great at winning duels and making recoveries. Hause has been the stronger part of their defense this season.
Tyrone Mings’ defensive dashboard can be seen in the above viz. He has been a regular under Dean Smith this season, whether he plays a back three or back four. His stats for duels, interceptions, and recoveries have been above average.
Eric Konsa’s defensive dashboard shows that he has been one of the weakest links in the central defense for Villa. His stats in the above viz show that he has consistently given average performances for them, which led to Dean Smith not opting to go with him in the back four.
The above viz is Axel Tuanzebe’s defensive dashboard for this Premier League season. The stats show that he has been a below-average performer for Aston Villa this season, but he was still a regular for them under Smith, partnering with Mings in the back-four.
Dean Smith’s replacement will have to solve these defensive problems and come up with a system that does not leak goals. Aston Villa had a promising start to the season but are now just two points outside the relegation zone. They will hope the new manager brings in a good run of results and at least gets them back into the upper half of the league.