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This out-of-favour Wolves star is exactly what Dean Smith needs to shore up Aston Villa’s leaky defence

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Aston Villa should sign Ethan Ebanks-Landell from Wolves in January

According to Birmingham Live, Wolverhampton’s out of favour centre-back Ethan Ebanks-Landell has caught the eye of several League One, League Two and Championship clubs.

The 25-year-old was a regular for Wolves in the Championship in his earlier days at the club and has made a total of 51 competitive appearances across all competitions.

However, the arrival of Nuno Espirito Santo marked a turnaround in his fortunes and Ebanks-Landell was frozen out of the first-team picture by the Portuguese boss.

Subsequently, the 25-year-old spent time on loan at Sheffield United and MK Dons after being deemed surplus to the club’s requirements. He is currently training with the U23 team at Molineux to keep himself fit and running.

Standing at 6ft. 2 inches, with a burly towering frame, Ebanks-Landell’s main attributes as a centre-back are his physical strength and aerial ability which allows him to get the better of his offensive counterparts.

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He is quite capable of putting the attackers off with his massive stature and his ability to time his jump to perfection to win aerial balls makes him a valuable asset to the backline while defending set-pieces and corners. As a matter of fact, he averaged 4.1 successful aerial duels in the 2015-16 season of the Championship.

Ebanks-Landell is quite swift and agile for a centre-back of his stature and covers ground quickly to cut out the attacks. He likes to play risk-free football and clears his lines more often than not. The 25-year-old has the tendency to let the team down with occasional lapses in concentration but his assets as a defender outweigh his liabilities.

To put things into perspective, Aston Villa should consider making a move for him in January. Villa are currently 8th in the Championship standings and have turned their fortunes around with some impressive performances in recent weeks.

While Dean Smith’s men have a good goalscoring record this season, having scored 39 goals from 20 games, they have one of the worst defensive records in the top-half. Villa have shipped goals at an alarming rate so far, having leaked 30 goals already. The 5-5 draw against Nottingham Forest further documented the need for bringing in defensive reinforcements in January.

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James Chester and Axel Tuanzebe have done a decent job in the heart of the defence this season but they have blown hot and cold in patches, letting the team down with occasional mental freezes. Mile Jedinak,34, is reaching the end of his playing days in England and might call it a day sooner or later.

Villa need more quality in their reserves to push for promotion this season and Ethan Ebanks-Landell would definitely be a handy addition to the squad.

 

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