Gregg Evans of The Athletic has lauded Aston Villa striker Mbwana Samatta ahead of the club’s trip to Southampton on Saturday.
Speaking on the 1874 podcast (20/02/2020), Evans praised the January signing for the trouble he caused Tottenham’s defence in the 3-2 to loss at Villa Park. He did not score but, for The Athletic journalist, the overall signs were promising.
On the podcast, Evans said: “He [Samatta] was a handful wasn’t he? He started really well, showing his aerial qualities once again and you know was getting in front of [Toby] Alderweireld and [Davinson] Sanchez at times and causing problems. He was dragging the centre-halves away and just making clever runs down the flanks.”
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The above is a fair assessment when you look at some of Samatta’s statistics from the game. On the day, the 27-year-old managed to win three aerial duels, the second-highest number in Villa’s team after Kortney Hause’s six (via WhoScored).
Samatta also completed both of his attempted dribbles, so it is easy to see the threat that Evans is talking about. Now it is about carrying that into that important clash against Southampton and adding to his sole goal so far versus Bournemouth as the former Genk man looks to fire Villa to safety.
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