Pundit tips Aston Villa youngster for extended first XI run after crushing Bailey update
Noel Whelan has tipped Dean Smith to call on an Aston Villa youngster to fill the void left by Leon Bailey’s injury blow.
The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested the Villans have the talent among their academy to cover for the 24-year-old.
As confirmed by Dean Smith on Thursday (23rd September), Villa will be without summer signing Bailey until after the October international break.
The Villans are also missing long-term injury absentee Trezeguet.
They have Anwar El-Ghazi, Bertrand Traore and Emi Buendia as their other senior winger options.
All three played in the League Cup defeat to Chelsea, while 19-year-old Jaden Philogene-Bidace came off the bench.
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With Bailey out for at least a month, Whelan suggested Smith could call upon his youngsters over the coming weeks.
Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge: “As a manager, you know you’ve got a match-winner there.
“You’ve been shown it and then all of a sudden, before the next game, you’ve got that setback and injury.
“A month is quite a long time.
“It’s not ideal but Aston Villa are another team that play a lot of young players.
“They’ll look at them and go: ‘We have got back up. It’s an opportunity for them to shine again.'”
Bailey has only managed to play three times for Villa, with injury limiting his availability.
Philogene-Bidace appears to be next in line in terms of the pecking order of wingers at Villa Park.
The teenager has also featured three times this season, once in the Premier League.
He has a total of four appearances and two assists under his belt for the Midlands heavyweights.