Aston Villa

Aston Villa

Premier League • England

Exclusive: Dwight Yorke reveals ‘huge next step’ for Villa as ‘remarkable’ Unai Emery is set a target

Unai Emery Aston Villa manager

Aston Villa boss Unai Emery

Aston Villa boss Unai Emery has been praised for the incredible job he has done since taking charge, with Dwight Yorke telling TEAMtalk why the best is yet to come and how the Champions League could be next.

The Midlands club were promoted back to the Premier League back in 2020 after three seasons in the second tier. Steered back into the big time by Dean Smith, he was ultimately replaced at the helm by Steven Gerrard in November 2021.

The Liverpool icon, though – despite a bright start – was unable to get a tune out of Villa. And he was to last just 11 months in the hotseat before being fired in October 2022.

The latest incumbent though, Emery, has engineered a major improvement at Villa Park. You can see the remarkable Premier League table since Emery took charge of Villa here.

Rising from the lower reaches of the table, Villa are now on course to finish in seventh place and bring European football back to the club.

And speaking exclusively to TEAMtalk, in association with, Yorke could not hide his delight for the progress they have made.

“Yeah, I’m happy about Villa. It’s obviously no secret there. I’ve done nearly 10 years of playing at that football club and I’ve watched it very closely over the years,” he said.

“In terms of the ups and downs of that football club and to see the transformation since Unai Emery comes in, since he came in there and done a remarkable job in the turnaround.

“Villa has always been a top-six club in British football, the history behind that football club… Huge fan base. They have really been underachieving over the years.”

Yorke sets Emery big task at Villa

Yorke believes Villa’s progress is partially down to the ambition of owners Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens.

The two businessman have bankrolled not just Villa’s signings, but also managed to attract Emery back to the Premier League from Villarreal.

Now Yorke reckons European football should be a regular target for Villa under Emery each and every season.

In addition, he claims a top-four finish and Champions League football could one day be in sight.

“They have huge, really wealthy owners; owners with a big aspiration for the football club to try and get to the level where Newcastle is and try to break in that top four.

“European football would be a great transition for Aston Villa. In terms of where they were and where they are now, it would be huge. That would mean a real big step for that football club. And I really do hope that they can really get into that European spot.

“If they do, that would be a really fantastic platform for them to really build and go forward. I am so delighted with the progress that they are making at this current stage.”

READ MORE ~ Euro Paper Talk: Villa eye signing of striker who once cost close to £100m