COMMENT by Amir Mir
Aston Villa ace James Chester has been ever-present for the Midlands club following his summer move from rivals West Brom.
The 27-year-old has shown this season why he is the best defender in the Championship, beating the likes of the highly-rated Leeds centre-back Pontus Jansson to that crown.
Since arriving at their respective clubs, the duo have brought a much-needed calmness to the defensive backline. But, Chester’s ability to read the game a lot better makes him stand out from his counterpart.
The Welshman showcased this at Euro 2016, where his home country reached the semi-final’s – and he has now brought that form into the second tier of English football.
Despite being sold from a Premier League club in the summer, Chester’s mistake-free performances have shown that he is too good for the Championship.
The former Hull City player senses danger quickly and can prove to be a threat in the air and on the ground which benefits Steve Bruce’s side.
Sweden international Jansson may have the edge in terms of bringing the ball out from the back, but from a purely defensive standpoint, Chester is the more dominant.
Either way, if their respective teams find themselves in the Championship next season, then there won’t be a shortage of teams in England’s top flight enquiring about their services.
In other Aston Villa news, supporters react on Twitter as the club is reportedly set to lose a second senior attacker.