Championship underachievers Aston Villa loaned versatile full-back Mitchell Clark to League Two Port Vale and it has gone very well so far.

Aston Villa are rather light at the back right now, particularly on the left-hand side of defence where only the unconvincing Neil Taylor can be considered a natural.

So the news that Mitchell Clark is thriving on loan at Port Vale is somewhat bittersweet. Yes, Villa fans will obviously be pleased to learn that one of their highly-rated youngsters is settling nicely into his loan spell in League Two.

But, on the other hand, it begs the question why the versatile Clark, who can also play on the right, was not kept around.

When his move to Port Vale was concerned, plenty of Villa fans expressed their frustration that Steve Bruce was not willing to give him a chance. And Clark’s impressive form with the Valiants suggests that he could have been a decent back-up in claret and blue after all.

The 19-year-old has played the full 90 minutes in each of Port Vale’s last four League One games and was excellent despite a 2-1 home defeat to Newport County on Saturday.

If the opinions of Port Vale fans are anything to go by, Clark certainly has the potential and the quality to play at a much higher level in the near future.

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