Exclusive: Pundit claims Aston Villa mainstay causing Smith headache

Jackie McNamara claims that John McGinn’s versatility in the middle of the park will be causing Aston Villa manager Dean Smith something of a headache moving forward.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Scotland international says that the Villa midfielder has proven his ability to play in both a holding role as well as a more attacking position.

The 25-year-old recently scored a hat-trick on international duty against San Marino, making it four goals in as many games for Scotland.

McNamara says that McGinn is forcing his manager to make a decision where to play him, Jack Grealish regularly starting in the more advanced position with his Scottish counterpart operating a little deeper.

McNamara told Football Insider: “I think he’s good at controlling the game but he showed in there he’s good at getting into good positions with the goals. I thought he was good, it helped him with the shape as well.

“I think he’s making him (Smith) make a choice, he’s managed to make a few goals as well since he’s moved up to the Premier League. I don’t think it’s hindered him at all, he’s started the season really well.”

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

McGinn has now made 53 appearances for the Villans since moving from Hibernian in the summer of 2018, establishing himself as a firm favourite among the fans at Villa Park.

He has played every minute of their Premier League campaign so far, the likes of Conor Hourihane and Douglas Luiz slotting in alongside him in the middle of the park.

In other Aston Villa news, Darren Bent claims that the supporters would love to sign a striker who is in Dean Smith’s sights.