Rebuilding under new boss Steven Gerrard, Aston Villa has continued with its busy transfer dealings in the current window. The West Midlands club has already put pen to paper on the high-profile permanent signing of Lucas Digne, as well as loan deals for Philippe Coutinho and experienced goalkeeper Robin Olsen. The latest addition is Calum Chambers, who joins from Arsenal on a free transfer for a 3.5 year contract that reunites him with fellow ex-Gunner Emi Martinez, who made the switch during the summer.
Who is Calum Chambers?
A feature in the Premier League since graduating from Southampton’s academy to join the first team in 2013-14, Calum Chambers is a name with which most of us will be familiar. Chambers moved to Arsenal the following season and featured heavily for them in that campaign, making over 20 appearances in the Premier League. His league performances even earned him three caps for the England senior team.
But Chambers would fall in and out of favor at Arsenal as the club transitioned from the Wenger era to Emery and Arteta. He ended up serving two loan-spells at Middlesbrough and Fulham before suffering a cruciate ligament injury in 2019 that kept him out of action for the best part of a year.
Although he has now recovered, he does not seem to factor into Mikel Arteta’s plans. At 28 years old he still has plenty of career ahead of him, so a move away from the Emirates seems logical.
How Will Chambers fit in at Aston Villa?
Chambers is a center back by trade, but at Arsenal he has also been utilized a fair amount in the right-back position and occasionally as a central midfielder, even picking up the odd goal. He was actually used heavily as a CDM during his loan spell at Craven Cottage, with his performances earning him the 2018–19 Fulham Player of the Season award.
Chambers’ ability to operate comfortably in three different positions makes him a valuable addition to Vill’a squad. That utility will suit the player too, since the center-back pairing of Mings and Konsa is unlikely to be broken up, and Matty Cash will probably remain first choice at right-back.
But it’s looking likely that Douglas Luiz may be moving on in this window, with multiple suitors ready to make a deal for him (including Arsenal). Should Luiz leave, Chambers would be the obvious candidate to slot into his empty CDM position.
Chambers has scored eight goals in his career, with six coming in the EPL, so he does offer some offensive threat for a fairly defensive player. Last season he was mostly deployed at right back, and the increased attacking freedom allowed in that position resulted in two assists over eight league starts.
As things stand, Chambers has 0.2% ownership among FPL managers and is priced at £4.2M, making him a real budget option. There aren’t many starters within this platform at that price-point, so if Chambers manages to break into the side then he could be great value. In fact, aggressive FPL managers might even consider bringing him in now as a replacement for the injured Livramento, using him as bench cover until he settles into the side.
In Fantrax, Chambers is classed as a defender and costs $1.10. At that price-point he could be an excellent enabler if he gets game time, freeing managers to shell out for premium assets or to stock up on double-gamers.
Again, all of this hinges on his likelihood of starts, but he’s well worth looking at as we get closer to the next game-week. And be sure to monitor the Douglas Luiz situation as well: If Luiz transfers out we could see Chambers become an instant starter in Villa’s midfield.
Do you think Chambers will be a success at Aston Villa? Will you consider him for your Fantasy teams? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.