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How should Dean Smith fill John McGinn void against Norwich City?

(Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)

Aston Villa

How should Dean Smith fill John McGinn void against Norwich City?

Aston Villa travel to Norwich City tonight hoping to build on last weekend’s win.

New manager Dean Smith got off to a winning start as Tammy Abraham’s goal was enough to sink Swansea City.

Smith now has to cope with his first away game as Aston Villa boss and he will be without a key man.

John McGinn has picked up a suspension and he will sit out of tonight’s trip to Carrow Road.

The Scotland international has been an integral part of the Aston Villa midfield this season.

His creativity has been vital and he will be sorely missed as the Villans prepare to face Norwich.


But how does Smith fill the void left by McGinn’s absence?

(Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

Well, he has two real options that he could take here. With Mile Jedinak a doubt and likely to miss this game, there are two standout candidates to replace McGinn.

Smith can either opt to make a defensive selection (Glenn Whelan) or a positive selection (Conor Hourihane).

Hourihane is more like-for-like with McGinn and his running and creativity would cause problems going forward.

But Norwich cannot be taken lightly, having just beaten Nottingham Forest away from home.

With lively attacking midfielders such as Moritz Leitner and Onel Hernandez in their ranks, Smith could opt to play Whelan as a holding midfielder instead.

That would help stem the flow of any Canaries’ attacks but McGinn’s creativity would still be lacking as Aston Villa venture forward.

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