Why Elabdellaoui would add some much-needed depth for Aston Villa
Back in October, the Daily Mail reported that a host of Premier League clubs including Leicester City, Bournemouth, Burnley, Watford, and Aston Villa were interested in Norway’s Omar Elabdellaoui.
Elabdellaoui was boought by Manchester City at the age of 16 from Skeid but could not make it to the first-team. After a series of loan spells, he joined Olympiacos Piraeus in 2014. It was during that time when the right-back joined Hull City and got a chance to play in the Premier League.
The 28-year-old has now captained both Olympiacos and Norway. He has established himself as the first-choice right-back for Olympiacos. He was also impressive for Norway in their 1-1 draw against Spain in the Euro qualifiers.
Elabdellaoui has come a long way since his time with City’s youth team and has caught the attention of Premier League sides, which means it could be time for him to make a name for himself in England.
His contract with the Greek giants is set to expire at the end of the season and according to the report, he would be able to make pre-contract agreements with his foreign suitors from January 1.
Meanwhile, Aston Villa have two right-backs in Frederic Guilbert and Ahmed Elmohamady at their disposal. Guilbert (24) has played 13 games so far while Elmohamady (32), who is in the twilight of his career, has made just 8 appearances.
In this regard, Elabdellaoui would be a useful addition to the squad if he decides to move to England for a second stint in the Premier League.
Villa boss Dean Smith would benefit from the Norwegian’s arrival as Elabdellaoui can play as a right midfielder too. He has adapted himself to be comfortable on the right side. This would also make for a healthy competition with their ranks.
The Oslo-born right-back has got experience at the international level, with 44 Norway caps to his name. During his youth days at City, he received huge praise from the coaches at Etihad stadium and was also tipped for greatness by then U18 coach Scott Sellars.
After immense experience under his belt, Elabdellaoui seems to be ready to get into Premier League action. He can go on to be successful at Villa if he makes the right choice and under Dean Smith, he can see his chances come regularly.
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With Elmohamady ageing, it would be a smart decision by Dean Smith to go all out for Elabdellaoui to strengthen his backline and add depth to the squad.
Therefore, Villa must make Elabdellaoui a priority signing if they are looking to bring in reinforcements.