The Lowdown: Poor season for Mings
The Englishman had a tough time of things during the summer, with former Villa manager Steven Gerrard deciding to strip him of the captaincy.
Since then, Mings’ form has been hit-and-miss this season, with some individual errors proving costly and doubts being raised over his long-term future.
With Unai Emery now in charge, this feels like a pivotal moment in the 29-year-old’s career, especially as reports have already suggested Villa will be in the market for a new left-sided defender.
The Latest: ‘Big six months’ ahead
That’s certainly the opinion of Jones, who told Give Me Sport that Mings needs to perform between now and the end of the season:
“Mings has probably got more to prove, I think he’s got a big six months ahead. He’ll still believe in himself, he’s got to at this point, it’s all going to be about strength of mind for him, I think, in how he comes through this.”
The Verdict: Time to prove himself
It does feel that Mings is battling to save his Villa Park career – he has been hailed as ‘outstanding’ by Gabby Agbonlahor in the past – especially with Emery no doubt eyeing up future signings to improve his overall squad.
Once the 2022 World Cup is done and dusted, the centre-back needs to find a consistently high level to prove his worth, with his current deal expiring in 2024 and the club potentially looking to cash in next summer.
The fact that Mings was in the team before the World Cup break does suggest that Emery will stick with him for now, but continued patchy showings could be hugely problematic for him.