According to a recent report from Sky Sports, Aston Villa are interested in a January move for defender Ben Gibson. The Englishman currently plays his football at Premier League outfit Burnley and has done so since leaving Middlesbrough last summer, although struggles for regular game time under Clarets boss Sean Dyche has called his future at Turf Moor into question.
And a recent report from Sky Sports suggests that Dean Smith’s Villa are one side keen on the 26-year-old, whose arrival could finally go some way to shoring up Villa’s leaky backline once and for all.
Ultimately, Gibson’s move to the Premier League with Burnley back in the summer of 2018 simply hasn’t worked out at all for the centre back, what with the Englishman having featured only once in the Premier League for the Clarets this term, which came in their 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Everton on Boxing Day.
As such, it’s difficult to see how the 26-year-old, who was called up to Gareth Southgate’s senior England squad back March 2017, is going to command regular football in the second half of the season – a move away looks to be his best bet in terms of first team action.
And a move to Smith’s Villa could be exactly what Gibson needs to put the last six months at Burnley behind him, while it’s also a deal that would surely be welcomed by the Villans given their difficulties defensively this season.
Ultimately, while the Midlands giants are second only to West Brom in terms of goals scored in the second tier this season, they have been extremely leaky at the back in shipping 46 goals in their 28 league matches – only Rotherham United (48) and Ipswich Town (50) have conceded more, and they are both in relegation trouble.
Clearly then, while it’s all well and good continuing to score goals at the other end, there will become a point this term in which the Villans will have to defend resolutely to win matches – at the moment though, with just six clean sheets all season, that looks unlikely.
Yet the arrival of Burnley’s Gibson could go some way to ending their defensive woes once and for all, as the 26-year-old played a lead role in helping Middlesbrough finish in the Championship’s top six last term with 46 league appearances for the Teessiders, in turn helping Tony Pulis’ side to the fourth best defensive record in the division.
Add in 38 appearances in their ill-fated Premier League campaign the season before, where Boro were again very difficult to score against and thus beat, and it’s clear just how resolute and accomplished a centre back Gibson is, and thus how much he’d benefit a Villa side that are having difficulty keeping the ball out of the back of the net.
As such, sealing a move for the 26-year-old would represent good news for Gibson as he bids for the first team football he’s unlikely to get at Burnley, while it’d also be exactly what Villa need as they seek to shore up their backline once and for all.
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