Three options Gerrard can consider as he faces Villa concern after Kamara blow

With Boubacar Kamara reportedly facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a knee injury, Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard has a big decision to make in midfield.

As per L’Equipe, Kamara is expected to be out for at least two months after suffering a knee sprain during the win over Southampton, and so Villa will potentially now have consider our options to find a suitable solution to deal with his absence.

READ MORE: Aston Villa injury news: Boubacar Kamara blow as knee injury details emerge

Fortunately, Gerrard has options. However, it’s difficult to see how any of those can replicate what Kamara brings to the team given how influential he has proven to be in Villa’s midfield since his arrival this past summer.

Taking into consideration the figures detailed in the tweet below alone, it shows his importance both in and out of possession as the engine room of the Villa XI, but it’s the defensive side of his game that will be missed most as he has added much-needed presence and protection in front of the Villa backline.

Luiz obvious choice, Nakamba could be given fresh chance

Given his familiarity with the No.6 role having been deployed there by Gerrard for most of last season, it feels as though Douglas Luiz will be the obvious choice to slot in and fill that void.

With his technical quality and passing ability, he’s shown that he can be a viable solution in that deeper midfield role, but time after time he’s also shown that he can’t do the required defensive side of it to a high enough standard on a consistent basis.

Having found some sort of balance and cohesion in the side with Kamara manning the middle of the pitch and giving us defensive solidity, it begs the question as to whether Gerrard should look at another option that has seemingly been ignored since the initial few weeks of his reign as Villa boss.

Marvelous Nakamba has yet to feature so far this season, and ultimately he rarely has since he suffered a knee injury a few weeks into Gerrard’s tenure last year.

It’s unclear what has caused that to happen given how important a job he did in those first few games with Gerrard at the helm, and with a lack of alternative defensive options, it makes no real sense as to how he hasn’t been utilised more.

With that in mind, will Gerrard give him a fresh chance to impress? Or will he simply resort back to Luiz? Summer signing Leander Dendoncker also comes into play here too as he’ll likely be favoured by Gerrard as one of his own additions.

There is a third option, but that seems the most unlikely. Villa have evolved into more of a 4-3-2-1 in the last two outings, but without Kamara’s quality in the deeper role, could we now switch to a two-man pivot in front of the defence?

That could see two of Luiz, Dendoncker and Nakamba paired together to provide a crucial balance, giving the likes of Jacob Ramsey, Philippe Coutinho, John McGinn, Leon Bailey and Emiliano Buendia more freedom further up the pitch behind one of Ollie Watkins or Danny Ings.

It’s a formation and system that has long been proposed by many Villa fans as we seemingly have the players suited to it, but time will tell if Gerrard goes with something he knows from last season or is prepared to think outside the box as we look to get through a hectic schedule leading up to the winter break without Kamara in the side.