Marvelous Nakamba appears to have got a new lease of life under new Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard after earning plaudits for his brilliant individual performance in his team’s impressive 2-1 win away at Crystal Palace on Saturday.
Villa were looking to make it back-to-back wins under new manager Steven Gerrard after beating Brighton and Hove Albion 2-0 last time out.
Their good run continued after collecting maximum points at Selhurst Park, thanks to goals from Matt Target and John McGinn while their opponents got a consolation from Marc Guéhi in time added on.
One of the top performers for Villa was the 27-year-old Zimbabwe international midfielder.
Nakamba took things to another level altogether, patrolling the middle of the park with equal quality and vigour, amid a stellar all-around performance.
𝟯𝟯 passes completed
𝟰 tackles won
𝟭 successful dribble
𝟭 key pass
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) November 28, 2021
After the victory, Nakamba picked up a rating of 7/10 by the respected sports app SofaScore for his performance on the day.
He completed 32 of his 37 attempted passes and made three tackles and two clearances, along with winning four duels against the Eagles.
Nakamba was also praised by the Birmingham Mail, who extensively Aston Villa matches, with their club correspondent Ashley Preece showering the Warriors star with praise.
“Villa’s standout performer in the first half as he won possession back at will. The Zimbabwean oozed confidence with the ball at his feet as well, sending in crisp passes to those in front of him. Nakamba nipped in well to thwart Benteke. Nakamba simply took the sting out of anything Palace tried to do. Superb once again and undroppable against City on Wednesday,” wrote Preece in giving Nakamba a rating of 9 out of 10.
After struggling for regular game time under former manager Dean Smith, Nakamba has hit a purple patch under the mentorship of the Liverpool legend Gerrard.
Nakamba joined Aston Villa from Belgian giants Club Brugge in 2019, for a reported £11 million.
However, after initially enjoying an impressive start to life in the Premier League, he struggled for consistency with the former Villa boss Smith preferring Brazilian international Douglas Luiz in the holding midfield role.
Nakamba was reduced to a peripheral role and rarely featured for Villa but the arrival of Gerrard appears to have finally given him a new lease of life.