Amid fresh speculation over his future at Aston Villa, Morgan Sanson seemingly faces uncertainty over whether or not he’ll still be at the club beyond this summer.
The 27-year-old arrived from Marseille in January 2021, but injuries and competition for places have limited him to just 20 appearances for Villa since.
That lack of consistency and time on the pitch to showcase his quality has led to constant questions being raised over his future at Villa, and with the Daily Mail suggesting that the Frenchman could leave if a good offer arrives this summer, should Villa offload him now or keep him for at least another year?
Still hope Sanson shines in a Villa shirt
Ultimately, that decision will be made by Steven Gerrard, as he has seen Sanson in training week in and week out since being appointed manager, and he’ll know by now whether or not he fits into his plans and will have a key role to play.
The signing of Sanson’s former Marseille teammate Boubacar Kamara has added further competition in midfield, but could that help him unlock his full potential or will it merely see him fall further down the pecking order?
Sanson has impressed more often than not when featuring for Villa, and it’s clear even against high level opposition there is a top player in there that just needs an extended run of games to get back to his best both in terms of conditioning and influence.
From his technical ability and passing range on the ball to his aggression and desire out of possession, he has the drive and attributes to succeed here, but time is seemingly now against him to prove that.
Frustratingly, the French midfielder has constantly struggled with injury setbacks during his time at the club, and that has hampered his ability to get regular opportunities and become a mainstay in the side as we simply haven’t seen enough of the quality that he possesses.
With Villa looking to compete for European qualification places next season though and with the possibility of featuring in Europe before too long, or at least that is the aim for all concerned, Sanson’s ability and experience at a high level will certainly come in handy and if we can get the best out of him, there’s no doubt he’ll make a difference for us.
The question is whether or not Gerrard has seen enough from him to warrant that faith and a chance to impress this season, or if the Villa boss has ultimately already decided that he’s an expendable figure in the squad, and so an exit could be on the cards.
Will exits elsewhere influence that decision? Douglas Luiz has 12 months remaining on his current Villa contract and so could leave this summer, while Carney Chukwuemeka is in a similar position. Assuming Kamara starts in the No.6 role, there aren’t as many options as Gerrard would perhaps like in that department beyond the likes of John McGinn, Jacob Ramsey and Tim Iroegbunam.
It’s hoped that this isn’t the end for Sanson in B6, that he can put his injury woes behind him and establish himself as a pivotal figure in the Villa midfield in the upcoming campaign. Admittedly it has been frustrating thus far, but there is surely enough there to know we can get more out of a top player in time.
Really frustrating time for Morgan Sanson with injuries since joining us. Still think it would be a real shame to see him leave, impressed more often than not when fit & involved but not seen enough. Top player there, time to offload or should we keep him?#avfc #UTV pic.twitter.com/pV3E6sVA6e
— Talk Villa (@thetalkvilla) June 21, 2022