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29 clean sheets v 22: Aston Villa stalwart pitted against current transfer target



Aston Villa have expressed an interest in taking Wigan defender Dan Burn to Villa Park this season, after a solid campaign in League One last time out.

26-year old Burn impressed in the heart of the Latics’ defence as they won League One at first time of asking. Their cup heroics against Manchester City didn’t disrupt their flow and they secured an immediate return to the second tier.

Meanwhile, Aston Villa were battling for a return to the top flight, but their endeavour was ultimately futile as they lost out to Burn’s former club, Fulham in the play off final.

Now Villa are preparing for another assault on the top six, this time on a smaller budget, and they’ve earmarked Burn as the man to help them get there. How does he measure up against James Chester, Villa’s centre back this season?

FLW looks at the two in our latest duel.

Chester played more matches than Burn, but between them they only missed one all season. Chester played in all 49 of Villa’s games in the league and play offs, whilst Burn appeared in 45 of the 46 games it took Wigan to get promoted.

Both like to get forward and chip in with a goal, Burn edging ahead of Chester by scoring five. The former Hull City defender got four in Villa colours, three in three games in March. Burn weighed in with two assists too, whereas Chester managed just one. Both have adequate ability in the attacking third, when required.

Chester is perhaps the fairer of the two players, he only amassed five yellow cards during the season, whereas Burn managed eight in fewer appearances. Neither were sent off though, so both know how far they can go on the field.

Whilst attacking prowess is important, the bread and butter of a centre halves job is clean sheets and defence. this is an area that Burns excels in, keeping 29 clean sheets, a percentage of 64.4%. Chester on the other hand, saw Villa keep 22 clean sheets during the games he played in, a percentage of 44.9%.

That also ensured Burn went more minutes between goals conceded, Wigan only let one in every 129 minutes he was on the pitch, whilst Chester conceded every 103 minutes. That is still less than a goal a game for both, impressive by any standards.

Whilst the stats show a comprehensive win for Burn, it must be considered the level of opposition the two were facing. Chester scored against Wolves and kept clean sheets against Middlesbrough and Leeds. Burn, however impressive the stats, scored against Fleetwood and kept clean sheets against Bury and Walsall.

Whilst the level of football has some impact on the numbers, Burn is a hugely impressive player who would boost Villa’s defensive offering. There’s no reason why the two couldn’t play together, helping push Villa back to where they feel they belong.

ScoopDragon Football News Network