Paul Merson comments on Dean Smith’s Aston Villa team selection

Ex footballer Paul Merson enjoying  day two of the Cheltenham Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse on March 11, 2015 in Cheltenham, England.

Aston Villa drew with Leeds United at the weekend.

Dean Smith, Manager of Brentford looks on during a Brentford training session at Brentford Training Ground on January 23, 2017 in Brentford, England. Brentford are due to play Chelsea in...

Paul Merson suggested on The Debate show on Sky Sports Football on Monday night (10:50pm, April 29, 2019) that he was surprised at Aston Villa manager Dean Smith’s team selection against Leeds United at Elland Road at the weekend.

Villa played out a 1-1 draw with Leads away from home at Elland Road in the Championship on Sunday afternoon.

The Villans fielded quite a strong team, with the likes of Jack Grealish, John McGinn and Tyrone Mings all starting.

Villa had already secured their place in the Championship playoffs, and they did not have much riding on the game.


Former Villa attacking midfielder Merson has suggested that he was surprised at Smith’s decision to field Grealish and other key players.

Merson said on The Debate show on Sky Sports Football on Monday night (10:50pm, April 29, 2019): “Seriously, I couldn’t believe how much was on the game.

"I am thinking, right, Villa are going to turn up here. Jack Grealish ain’t gonna play, a couple of others might not play, and everybody played.”

Jack Grealish of Aston Villa is tackled by Kalvin Phillips of Leeds United during the Sky Bet Championship match between Leeds United and Aston Villa at Elland Road on April 28, 2019 in...

Winning promotion

Villa are likely to face West Bromwich Albion in the Championship playoff semi-final, and the Villans could end up playing Leeds in the final to clinch promotion to the Premier League.

Smith’s side had won 10 games in a row before the draw with Leeds, and the Villa Park faithful will be confident of the team maintaining their form in the playoffs.

Paul Doswell manager of Sutton United and ex-Arsenal player and pundit Paul Merson in discussion during a Sutton United FA Cup media day on February 16, 2017 at the Borough Sports Ground...

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