The Liverpool defender is currently on loan at Aston Villa but he is yet to feature.
When Aston Villa signed Tiago Ilori on loan from Liverpool last summer it looked like a canny piece of business.
After all, here was a versatile young player who had impressed during loan spells in Ligue 1 and La Liga who was now seeking to make his mark in the Premier League before hopefully cementing a future first-team spot at Anfield.
But so far, the young Portuguese player has failed to make a single appearance for Villa’s senior side due to an apparent lack of match fitness.
That was somewhat surprising considering how many matches he has played first at Granada and then at Bordeaux in recent seasons. But it seems the 22-year-old has now turned a corner, making the bench for Saturday’s Premier League clash with Southampton and playing the full 90 minutes for Villa’s under-21s two days later against Derby County.
Villa manager Remi Garde will know the importance of the festive period and if he can get his side winning they could yet climb out of the relegation zone, despite currently being rooted to the bottom of the table.
With the matches coming thick and fast, Ilori could be vital as he can play both as a centre-back and as a holding midfielder, and while it took him time to get started, do not be surprise if the Liverpool loanee makes up for it in 2016.