Highly competitive player very close to Aston Villa transfer, £43 transfer fee received, Emery rates him ahead of Mings

Aston Villa are edging closer to signing one of Unai Emery’s former players in La Liga, with Villa Park looking like a possible destination for a highly-rated defender – as per reports.

 

The Spaniard has given the club a new lease of life since his arrival in October, taking the Villans from a side with a below-average prognosis to one set to contend in Europe next season.

With his extensive CV comes a significant pull in the transfer window, as communicated by the quality of Villa’s reported targets this summer.

 

What’s the latest on Pau Torres to Aston Villa?

As originally reported by Football Transfers at the beginning of the month, Villarreal centre-back Pau Torres is a player wanted by Emery in the Premier League.

The two worked together in La Liga, with the Villa boss claiming he had “never seen” a centre-back like the 26-year-old throughout his coaching career.

The latest news has revealed that Villa are reportedly “leading the race” to capture the defender’s signature, as per GIVEMESPORT and journalist Rudy Galetti.

The report states that the Midlands club are in a “privileged position” due to Emery’s relationship with his former player, who has a release clause of around £43m.

 

What could Pau Torres bring to Aston Villa?

Praised by former Villarreal player and youth coach Javi Calleja as being an “extraordinary talent”, Torres has established himself as one of Spain’s most promising defenders.

 

The centre-back is not only monstrous in defence but is one of the best ball carriers in his position in Europe, as shown by his numbers over the past year.

As highlighted by FBref, the Spaniard ranks in the top 1% of central defenders across Europe’s top five leagues in progressive carries, averaging a huge 2.25 per 90, earning praise as being a “pattern breaker” for his ventures up field.

The 26-year-old could bring so much to Villa’s defence, and the Premier League, leaving Emery with a tough decision for selection due to the emergence of Tyrone Mings.

The Englishman has hit his best form under the Spaniard, earning him an international call-up and applause for his rise to form.

 

While the 30-year-old’s numbers are similar to that of Torres in La Liga this season, the defender could be in for a battle for his starting place alongside Ezri Konsa, with the consideration that Emery may opt to build for the future and ditch him in favour of a youthful partnership in central defence.

In comparison to Torres, Mings averages 4.5 clearances per game to the Spaniard’s 4.2, with both defenders winning an average of 62% of their total duels this campaign – as per Sofascore.

 

The 26-year-old betters the Villa centre-back in terms of tackles per 90, registering an average of 1.3 to the Englishman’s 0.4 per game as well as being significantly stronger in transition with Mings averaging just 0.57 progressive carries per 90.

When speaking to The Athletic in April, Emery admitted that he wanted to have depth in each position to improve performance, which he could do in signing Torres with reference to Mings’ future.

It’s a favoured predicament to be in should the Spaniard get the signing over the line, however, one that can only benefit the squad.

 


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