‘Needs to believe’ – What lies in store for Aston Villa’s Callum O’Hare when Coventry City stint ends? #PL

‘Needs to believe’ – What lies in store for Aston Villa’s Callum O’Hare when Coventry City stint ends?




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Callum O’Hare has been a big hit at Coventry City so far and its fair to say that the fans have taken to the talented youngster.

He has been a key part of the Sky Blues squad this season and provided a creative outlet and spark that the side have needed.

But what does the future hold for the youngster?

We asked BirminghamLive’s Aston Villa reporter Ashley Preece to give us a lowdown on the youngster and what happens next.

How highly do Aston Villa rate Callum O’Hare?

He’s always been an exciting, electrifying talent.

At present, O’Hare’s a poor man’s Jack Grealish which may not sound like a compliment but it is. The fleet-footed youngster manned-up during a loan spell up in the wilderness of Carlisle 12 months ago, earning rave reviews from then-manager Steven Pressley.

He’s an out-and-out play-maker, a No.10, a player who looks to make things happen at every given opportunity. As for Villa rating O’Hare, Dean Smith and the coaching staff simply do.

Smith started O’Hare in the FA Cup at Villa Park last January while, following his Carlisle loan spell, was heavily involved in pre-season, both Stateside and in Germany. Smith sent O’Hare out on loan again to test him at Coventry and, once more, the little star from Solihull is impressing. O’Hare’s deal at Villa Park expires in the summer, with Villa yet to decide on whether to offer the 21-year-old a new long-term contract.

Callum O’Hare evades a challenge from Doncaster Rovers’ Joe Wright.

Is he far off the first-team if he is back at Villa next season?

It all depends if Villa stay up or go down. If it’s the latter, I believe O’Hare will be offered a new deal while being tasked with kicking on in Grealish’s absence knowing Villa will be a Championship club.

If Villa stay up, Smith will have to decide whether or not O’Hare’s worthy of a contract. He’s got bags of potential – but can Smith and his staff release that ability given the demands of the Premier League, or will Villa kick-on and buy big should they survive? It remains to be seen.

Callum O’Hare in action for Coventry City against Bristol Rovers

Do you think Villa would be keen to send him back to Coventry next season, regardless of the division?

As mentioned, it all depends if Villa offer O’Hare a new deal. If the unthinkable happens and Villa drop down, O’Hare stays at Villa Park and will no doubt become a key member of the squad.

He turns 22 in May, so it’s about time he kicks on in the game now, starring at a level he’s more than capable of in the Championship. I don’t see what Villa will gain from O’Hare going back out to Coventry again next term, regardless of division.

The attacker will be due a growth spurt and could be given a training programme to bulk up, similar to the way Grealish has. Next season could be now or never for O’Hare at Villa.

What are your own thoughts and hopes for O’Hare? 

Out of the crop of Villa players with contracts expiring in June, O’Hare is the main man Villa supporters want to see tied down. That speaks volumes as fans know the scary potential O’Hare possesses.

He’s a one of a kind, a gem of a player when he gets going and sees pictures not many other players see in games. I just think, through no fault of his own, he hasn’t started as many games as he or Smith would have liked during his time at Cov.

He’s been in and out – more in of late, though – while his goals return hasn’t been too impressive, three from 35 appearances.

He has made seven assists, though, which shows he’s more of a creator. As for hopes, I want O’Hare to really step up a level. He’s got to be playing Championship football week in, week out.

He’s good enough but one thing he perhaps struggles with is self-confidence. O’Hare just needs to believe in himself and, once he starts doing so, he’ll be the bane of opposition players’ lives.



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