Matt Targett has made a “perfect” start to his Aston Villa after having to bide his time for his opportunity, according to Noel Whelan.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider editor Wayne Veysey, the ex-Leeds United and Coventry City striker explained why he has been blown away by the impact of the left-back.

Dean Smith opted to make Neil Taylor his first chance for the start of the season even though the club spent £14million rising to a potential £17million to prise Targett from Southampton during the summer window.

The 23-year-old made his first Premier League appearance for Villa in their 2-2 draw against Burnley at the end of last month and then produced a dynamic display in the 5-1 mauling of Norwich City.

“I was very impressed,” Whelan told Football Insider. “He has waited a long time for his opportunity, he was hardly used at the start, and seized it in the perfect way. It’s been a great start for him.

“It helps when you have good players in front of you, that makes a huge difference. But he was the box-to-box player on the left side they needed.

“Targett has really good Premier League experience and was signed to strengthen a position that needed strengthening. He could be a really good signing.”

Former England Under-21 international Targett ended his 15-year association with Southampton after graduating from the youth ranks to make 63 Premier League appearances for the club.

He has now made four appearances for Villa, two of which have come in the League Cup.

In other Aston Villa news, it can be REVEALED that the club are battling with a Midlands rival to sign an attacker from a north-west club.