By Sports Reporter
ZIMBABWE Warriors star Marvelous Nakamba marked his return to the Aston Villa starting line-up in style with an impressive performance to inspire his side to a comfortable victory over Newcastle at Villa Park on Saturday night.
After earning only his second Premier League start of the season, Nakamba was one of the star performers for Aston Villa as they ran out 2-0 winners with Ollie Watkins and Bertrand Traore scoring the goals against the Magpies.
Nakamba was in fine form all evening to ensure Villa did not miss the services of John McGinn, who was absent through suspension.
Following the much-needed win which kept Villa’s hopes of finishing in the top four alive, the Birmingham-based club’s supporters took to Twitter to speak of their delight at Nakamba’s performance.
The Zimbabwe international also earned himself a rating of 7.5 out of 10 from the Birmingham Mail newspaper for his impressive display.
He misplaced just one of his total 65 passes the entire game, made 75 touches, four ground duals (75% Won) two successful tackles and two interceptions.
In passing the 7.5 out of 10 rating, Aston Villa correspondent Ashley Preece, writing for the Birmingham Mail, said: “Back in for his first start and first taste of match action since Burnley in mid-December, some five games ago. Kept possession really well in the heart of Villa’s midfield. Always offered short from goal kicks and looked unflustered against Newcastle’s midfield. A much welcome 90 minutes for Nakamba who proved his worth to Villa’s squad with a good performance as he broke up play whenever he could. Did well on his return.”
Nakamba has struggled for minutes this season but this performance would give Smith some food for thought.
The 27-year-old offered a timely reminder of what he is capable of and the defensive midfielder will now hope for more minutes after turning down loan offers from Turkish clubs in order to fight for a first team spot at Villa.
Nakamba cost Villa £11 million from Club Brugge and he reportedly earns £55,000-a-week at Villa Park.