Why Chambers signing is a smart move from Villa

Aston Villa confirmed the signing of Calum Chambers from Arsenal on Thursday, in what was a savvy addition to Steven Gerrard’s squad.

As per the club’s official site, the 27-year-old has signed a three-and-a-half-year contract with Villa, while there was no mention of a fee being involved in the deal with his previous agreement with Arsenal set to expire this summer.

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In turn, he becomes our fourth major signing of the January transfer window following the arrivals of Philippe Coutinho, Lucas Digne and Robin Olsen, and although he’ll have to displace some key individuals in the Villa starting line-up, it’s a move that makes sense for all concerned.

Chambers ticks a lot of key boxes for Villa

Following Axel Tuanzebe’s exit earlier this month, adding depth and competition in the centre-half positions emerged as a key concern for Villa and Gerrard heading into the second half of the campaign.

While Kortney Hause is a solid option for us in that department, Villa were lacking a right-sided, right-footed centre-half to fill in for Ezri Konsa to provide balance in that area, and so Chambers comes in to fill that void and provide an important solution.

Further, his versatility allows him to play in other roles too, be it at right-back or as a defensive midfielder, and so it’s a good utility addition for Gerrard in case of injuries and suspensions elsewhere.

Having had Tuanzebe at the club on countless loan deals, this move now shores that position up with a long-term plan in mind and so it’s one key area of the squad that Villa can be happy with and focus their attention elsewhere.

From Chambers’ perspective, this is a fresh start with new motivation for a new challenge.

That should drive him in training and in turn his new teammates, and he’ll no doubt relish the opportunity to try and establish himself as a key figure in the side moving forward, when he gets a chance to impress.

At 27 years of age, with the experience he has gained particularly at Arsenal in terms of playing at the highest level and winning trophies, it’s an important signing for Villa to improve the overall quality of the squad.

Gerrard has made no secret of his desire to see Villa challenging for domestic cups and becoming increasingly competitive in the Premier League to start competing for European qualification spots.

If we want to be a competitive side on multiple fronts year in and year out, we need options and depth. That is certainly what Chambers provides in defence as a minimum expectation, now it’s up to him to show Gerrard that he can be much more than that, and if that is the case, then it’s a boost for everyone that we have proper competition in every position in the side.