With the expiration of Axel Tuanzebe, Kortney Hause and Tyrone Mings’ loan spells following Aston Villa’s play-off promotion in 2018/19, the club only had James Chester and Tommy Elphick as recognised centre-halves on the books going into their first season back in the top flight since the ill-fated 2015/16 relegation season.
As the sun set on that glorious day at Wembley and the weeks passed by, I admit that like many fellow Villa fans I allowed myself to dream of what we might be able to achieve as signing after signing was coming through the front door at Bodymoor Heath, and the optimism swirled around Villa Park.
Although we achieved our end goal of survival, there were a lot of flaws within our season that must be rectified for next year.
This is it! After 36 games played in the Premier League Aston Villa host Arsenal for their final home game of the season; a fixture which holds paramount importance in deciding which league Villa will be competing in next season.
Going into one of the most important games of the season given Watford’s win over Norwich on Tuesday night, making survival prospects look all the slimmer, I spoke to James Savundra to hear an opposition fan’s view on the all-important fixture as United hunt for Champions League qualification.