Why Melayro Bogarde would be a good long-term signing for Aston Villa
According to Bild via HITC (h/t Birmingham Live), Aston Villa are among a host of clubs in Europe vying for the signature of highly-rated Hoffenheim defender Melayro Bogarde. The 18-year-old centre-back has been courted heavily by Borussia Dortmund and Ajax while elite clubs such as AC Milan and Barcelona have also been mentioned among the potential suitors for the teenager.
Melayro Bogarde spent nine years in Feyenoord’s youth system between 2009 and 2018 before joining Hoffenheim’s academy and represented the club across U-17 side, U-19 side and the reserve side. He made his first-team debut in the Bundesliga against Mainz towards the back end of last season and was promoted to the senior squad ahead of the ongoing campaign.
The 18-year-old has been a regular fixture in Hoffenheim’s Bundesliga squad this season and made his first appearance as a starter in the 5-0 rout of Slovan Liberec in the Europa League. The centre-back also started the 2-1 league defeat against Wolfsburg prior to the international break.
Bogarde has represented the Netherlands at U-16, U-17 and U-18 levels and was a part of the squad that won the 2019 UEFA U-17 European Championship.
Villa would benefit from Bogarde’s potential
Aston Villa aren’t really crying out for reinforcements at centre-back, with Ezri Konsa, Tyrone Mings, Kortney Hause and Bjorn Engels all competing for places in that department. However, it wouldn’t be a bad idea for the Villans to bring in fresh faces with one eye on the future, meaning the club’s interest in Melayro Bogarde certainly makes sense.
The 18-year-old has already started to rub shoulders with the senior pros and looks set for a bright future in the game.
Bogarde lacks the experience – he has only played a handful of games for Hoffenheim – to challenge for an immediate first-team role at Villa. Given his potential, though, there are obvious chances that the centre-back could evolve into a key player at Villa Park in the coming seasons.
Villa have largely focused their recruitment on bringing in young players with room for growth, as evident from deals for Konsa, Douglas Luiz, Matty Cash and Ollie Watkins in recent times.
They have also roped in talented youngsters like Ben Chrisene, Sil Swinkels, Aaron O’Reilly and Caolan McBride to revamp their academy. The rise of Indiana Vassilev from the academy to the first-team further underlines the club’s interest in promoting young talent.
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Suffice to say, Melayro Bogarde still has plenty of time to make significant improvements to his game at 18. Aston Villa beating off competition for the teenager’s services would surely hand a boost to their long-term plans moving forward.