Following his arrival from Brentford in 2019, Ezri Konsa has gradually established himself as a fundamental figure in the Aston Villa backline and so a deserved contract extension was a welcome boost last week.
The 23-year-old arrived with big expectations and naturally had the trust of Dean Smith following their time working together at The Bees, but with competition for places in the Villa defence he had to be patient before showing his class.
Konsa is already on the verge of surpassing his tally of 31 appearances in all competitions from last season, while he has featured in the Premier League more this year than he did last with nine more games to go.
That in itself tells a story about how he has now firmly established himself in the starting XI alongside Tyrone Mings, and coupled with the likes of Emiliano Martinez, Matty Cash and Matt Targett, they have brought much-needed solidity and stability to the backline to the point where we have the third best defence in the top flight.
From his excellent reading of the game to his physicality, recovery pace and defensive awareness to the composure and quality in possession to build out from the back, Konsa has all the tools required as a modern-day centre-half to shine and it’s a huge boost for Villa that he has committed his long-term future to us.
As seen in the club’s tweet below, Konsa signed a contract extension last week that keeps him at Villa Park until 2026, and it’s hoped that he can continue to show the same level of improvement, development and consistency in the years ahead to emerge as a real stalwart in this side.
Both Villa and Smith are looking to continue to build and progress moving forward, and we’ve seen that this season with smart acquisitions and the improved points tally as well as the outside hope of a possible run at European qualification.
While it will be important this summer to continue to add quality players to improve the squad and add depth, it’s also vital that we keep our best players at the club and Konsa certainly falls into that bracket.
Time will tell if other deals follow for other important individuals, but this is a great start from Villa to secure Konsa to a new contract, and if he continues on his current path, there’s no reason why he won’t be knocking on the door to join the likes of Mings, Jack Grealish and Ollie Watkins in the England squad in the near future as our Three Lions contingent continues to grow.
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) April 2, 2021