McGinn award speaks volumes

By Graham Hill

JOHN McGinn’s Aston Villa player of the year awards is just reward for what the Scot has achieved this season.

When he signed, the fee was seen as a modest one, £2.8million for a Hibernian midfielder.

But he was also wanted by the then Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers before deciding to join Steve Bruce at Villa Park.

Yet, despite the competition, McGinn arrived at a knockdown price.

Now he looks like the bargain buy of the season for his role as the ‘engine room’ of Villa’s promotion bid.

Any team looking to snap up McGinn from Villa in the summer will be talking upwards of £20million.

Which is why it is so important Villa go up through the play-offs if they are to keep McGinn and Jack Grealish.

Speaking of which, McGinn’s season is put into perspective by the fact that he beat Grealish to both the Players’ Player of the Season and Supporters’ Player of the Year awards.

Anyone at Villa will tell you that Grealish is the best player in the division – but McGinn has done so much for the club since moving south.

Grealish’s return – and there award of the captain’s armband in March – was definitely the catalyst for Villa’s revival.

And his superb goal against Rotherham – started and finished by Grealish – was worthy of being named Villa’s goal of the season.

However, our vote went to McGinn’s stunning volley against Sheffield Wednesday – if that had been scored in the Premier League then it would have been repeated time and again.

As for Grealish, he Tweeted that Alan Hutton’s brilliant strike against Blues at Villa Park should have won it.

Finally, the Academy Player of the Year, Jacob Ramsey looks to be a worthy winner of the prize. He can be one for the future and is already on Dean Smith’s radar.

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