Aston Villa loan ratings: Louie Barry struggles for minutes as Kaine Kesler shines in Swindon – Ashley Preece

Aston Villa could field a whole starting XI of players currently on loan, with loan officer Mile Jedinak keeping an eye on Bromsgrove players in Brugge.

From former members of the first squad to the hopes of the youth squad looking to grow from boys to men, here’s our extensive roundup of Villa loans and how they’re all doing …


Villa club’s record-breaking 2019 buyback is back at former club Brugge, a place he holds in high regard after a successful four-year spell before joining Villa in the Premier League for £ 22million . Wesley is currently in the pecking order with 20-year-old Charles De Ketelaere the No.9 preferred option in the Brugge 4-3-3 system. The Brazilian came to help Brugge beat RB Leipzig in the Champions League as he also started in their 1-0 win over RSC Charleroi. Still, he hasn’t played since September 28 and failed to make the squad against Anderlecht before the international break.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 74 (one departure, one replacement appearance)

LOAN RATING: 3/5 – the loan was desperately needed as Wesley looks to relaunch his career after such a horrific injury suffered in 2020.


Conor Hourihane in action for the Republic of Ireland

The Irishman’s career at Villa is over, Hourihane already bids farewell before his contract at Villa Park expires in June 2022. Hourihane is back to the level where he thrived for many years. Hourihane has only started once for the Blades, assisting twice from both corners against Hull City. The 30-year-old was an unused replacement last time around against Bournemouth with Oliver Norwood, John Fleck and Iliman Ndiaye all preferred in the middle.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 119 (one start, four substitute appearances)

LOAN RATINGS: 3/5 – a move that suits him given United’s core British and Irish players, as starts have been tough to secure so far.

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Guilbert is back in Strasbourg after a successful five-month loan spell last season, helping Les Coureurs survive in Ligue 1. Guilbert has made four starts this season, helping Strasbourg win against FC Metz and Lens.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 352 (four starts, one replacement appearance)

LOAN RATING: 5/5 – Guilbert plays week after week in Ligue 1 which is exactly what you would expect from a loan.


Barry failed to make it to Paul Cook’s squad this weekend, despite returning to the game at the EFL Trophy last week. Barry had been out with a tooth abscess before that, but playing time has been limited this season with Town’s squad feeling somewhat bloated after a summer of 19 additions. Cook has been complimentary of Barry, but the man from the Villa is now very low in the pecking order, with Jedinak to assess the situation at Portman Road in January.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 215 (three starts, one replacement appearance)

LOAN RATING: 1/5 – Barry’s one and only start to Ligue 1 came in August and while the experiences in a men’s locker room have been good for him, the teenager needs to play games.


Aston Villa forward Brad Young on loan for Carlisle United
Aston Villa forward Brad Young on loan for Carlisle United

Young scored his first goals in senior football a fortnight ago with a successful brace against the Everton Under-23s in the EFL Trophy. In the league, now sacked Chris Beech gave Young two straight starts in losses to Forest Green and Bristol Rovers, the latter costing Beech his post over the weekend.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 416 (four starts, five substitute appearances)

LOAN RATING: 3/5 – an interesting time for Young now following the dismissal of the manager who signed him. Young is featured in all but two of Carlisle’s games this season as he moves from boy to man 200 miles from home.

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Back in his native America alongside Gonzalo Higuain, Blaise Matuidi, Kieran Gibbs and Ryan Shawcross for David Beckham’s Inter Miami team led by Phil Neville. Miami is currently on a five-game losing streak, with Vassilev’s last start coming in his previous win in Toronto, playing in 10th overall. Vassilev’s playing time has been a bit limited lately, as he has only failed twice on the pitch. He has two goals to his name in Miami’s victories over Nashville and Chicago Fire.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 415 (three starts, 12 replacement appearances)

LOAN RATING: 4/5 – Villa de Vassilev’s contract is unlikely to be extended when it expires next summer, so he is fighting for his next move and doing well in the United States.


Kaine Kesler-Hayden of Swindon Town in action during the Sky Bet League Two match between Northampton Town and Swindon Town at Sixfields
Kaine Kesler-Hayden in action for Swindon Town

The 18-year-old was a revelation in Swindon Town, playing 90 minutes continuously at right-back while, this weekend, he was forced to miss out on his win over Forest Green due to the involvement of the England under 20s. Kesler was sent off on his second start against Young’s Carlisle but, following his one-game ban, he was straight from the start again, with head coach Ben Garner giving the Villa man a high rating. The Robins are currently flying high in third in League Two.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 710 (eight starts)

LOAN RATING: 5/5 – A crack loan for both sides here, with Jedinak’s well-known Swindon manager since his time at Crystal Palace.


The Hungarian, 20, plays a stone’s throw from the National League on the home side of Bromsgrove Sporting, which faces Tamworth, Rushall Olympic, Alvechurch and Hednesford Town. Onodi plays week after week, with millions of spectators this weekend when Bromsgrove hosts National League leaders Grimsby Town in the FA Cup, live on BBC One (kick off 12:30 p.m.). Onodi, of course, played in the FA Cup last season against Liverpool.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 900 (10 departures)

LOAN RATING: 3/5 – the young stopper is a permanent fixture at Bromsgrove but the level could well be higher considering that Onodi is a Hungarian U19 international.


The FA Youth Cup winner started off as a house on fire and drew rave reviews from fans in Stockport County, starting four straight games before being forced to retire early due to injury during of the 3-0 loss to Yeovil. Raikhy hasn’t appeared since, unfortunately, as he came out with a problem. The midfielder missed the weekend’s 1-0 win over Aldershot, with County winning three games on the spin.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 219 (four starts)

LOAN RATING: 3/5 – It started very well for Raikhy but a glitch hampered his progress. Haven’t played for over a month.

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The versatile teenager has racked up just 90 minutes of action so far with the National League Grimsby table tops. Revan hasn’t left the bench since replacing the center-back for the final 12 minutes against Eastleigh on September 18.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 90 (one departure, one replacement appearance)

LOAN RATING: 1/5 – It’s been tough for Revan who will have to remain patient to enter Grimsby given their scorching form.


Finn Azaz of Newport County in action during the Carabao Cup second round game between Newport County and Southampton at the Rodney Parade
Finn Azaz in action for Newport County

A youngster of the summer, the former West Brom Azaz player is in Newport County in League 2 where he has appeared on all but three teams this season. The 21-year-old scored at Barrow in his last start just over a fortnight ago, with Newport in the middle of the table.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 524 (five starts, five substitute appearances)

LOAN RATING: 4/5 – the great attacking midfielder gets a lot of minutes in League Two.


The 21-year-old returned to the game last week for the first time since February after suffering a foot injury. Bridge plays two steps below Ligue 1 for FC Annecy, near the French border with Switzerland. Bridge is a cultured center-back who is very good with the ball, so a loan to Europe hasn’t come as a surprise to those who have watched Bridge for Villa’s Under-23s.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 2 (no start, two substitute appearances)

LOAN RATING: 2/5 – Bridge is finally back. He is also learning French while Villa has a deal in place that will see Bridge start the vast majority of games.

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From center-back to center-back here as Dominic Revan returned to action for the first time this season in Northampton’s penalty shootout loss to Walsall in the EFL Trophy. Revan, 21, was released with a knee injury after undergoing surgery this summer. He signed a short-term loan with Northampton until December 31 while, over the weekend, he failed to make it to Jon Brady’s squad.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 90 (one departure)

LOAN RATING: 2/5 – Like Bridge, Revan is back after a six-month hiatus, with the hope that playing time will now be available in League Two.


Tyreik Wright of Salford City in action during the Sky Bet League Two match between Salford City and Northampton Town
Tyreik Wright is loaned to Salford City

The 20-year-old winger was on international duty this weekend, helping the Republic of Ireland’s Under-21 win over Luxembourg. Wright appears to be enjoying life in Salford under the watchful eye of Paul Scholes, Gary Neville, Nicky Butt and others. Wright scored his first senior goal in the 3-0 win over Newport at the end of August.

MINUTES OF MATCH: 264 (four starts, three replacement matches)

LOAN RATING: 4/5 – a good loan this one knowing that Wright is heavily involved under boss Gary Bowyer. Salford is 17th in Ligue 2.

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