Ashley Young To Everton: Why He's Not Just A 'Vibes' Signing

The 38-year-old is set to join the Toffees on a free transfer from Aston Villa
12:30, 11 Jul 2023

Everton are closing in on the signing of Ashley Young on a free transfer following his release from Aston Villa. Given the state the Toffees are in at the moment having narrowly avoided relegation from the Premier League in the past two years, supporters won’t be thrilled at another veteran full-back joining the club.

For years they have been heavily dependent on fellow ageing right-back Seamus Coleman and while they did try to ease the burden with the arrival of youngster Nathan Patterson from Rangers, he is still adjusting to the demands of the top flight. 

Everton fans want to see signs that the club are trying to turn a corner and climb the league table, and Young may not be viewed as the most exciting arrival. Some may see this addition as a ‘vibes’ signing, similar to that of former loanee Conor Coady’s role in the England team. While he didn’t feature much for the Three Lions, Gareth Southgate would continue to select Coady, referencing his impact off the field with the younger players in the dressing room.


Young would bring a wealth of experience having played in Europe and on the world stage, and perhaps Sean Dyche feels that his profile is needed to help Everton during this transitional period with a lot of change happening behind the scenes. The fans want to see signs of progress in 2023-24, but Young could help with that.

While his age isn’t inspiring, Villa fans were disappointed to see Young depart in the summer after he had played a key role for the side in 2022-23. You may feel that someone of Young’s vintage would only have made a handful of appearances in the Premier League but he featured 29 times for the Villans last term.

He featured more than his young counterpart Matty Cash and had a much larger impact on the pitch, which made his release difficult to comprehend for fans who felt Young still had much to offer under Unai Emery. And that was especially the case considering the added matches from qualifying for the Europa Conference League.

Their loss could be Everton’s gain, but it likely depends on the squad around him to determine if he can flourish at Goodison Park. With Coleman still recovering from an injury sustained towards the end of the last campaign, there is a void for an experienced full-back on the right side of the defence. 

He offers versatility to Dyche too, given that he can play in both full-back roles and will also utilised in his former natural position of winger on occasion as well as other midfield slots. His type of player is handy to have around, and supporters may think twice about this acquisition had they watched him intently last year. He was regarded as one of Villa’s best players in a season which saw the club secure European football.

Young will be brought in to be a leader on and off the field and that is what the Everton players need after two disappointing seasons in a row. He can support the younger members of the squad in their development and offer support to the older figures by being able to play in different positions. For years at Manchester United he was considered a unifier in the dressing room even when he was a bit-part member of the first team.

With Everton’s current position in the Premier League food chain, this signing is not only smart but cost effective given the club has squandered millions of pounds in recent years and has had only regression to show for it.

Everton are 10/3 to get relegated with Betfred*

*18+ | BeGambleAware | Odds Subject To Change

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