Unai Emery impressed with Ollie Watkins’ ‘fantastic’ performances

Aston Villa boss Unai Emery praised Ollie Watkins’ desire after the striker scored two goals in the 3-3 draw with Brentford.

The England international was a doubt for the game with a hamstring injury but was passed fit and put his side ahead before rescuing a point after the Bees scored three goals in nine minutes to overturn a 2-0 deficit.

Watkins’ double took his Premier League tally to 18 for the season and he is firmly in the race for the Golden Boot, trailing Manchester City striker Erling Haaland by just one.

Emery said: “Ollie has been fantastic, his performances. Fantastic. He is very involved in the new demands we have as a club.

Ollie Watkins
Ollie Watkins has scored 18 Premier League goals this season (Nick Potts/PA)

“To be in the national team, to be one of the best scorers in the Premier League.

“This is his motivation every day. And to get it, to achieve it, is through hard work. And today one step more in his increase of the level.”

Brentford defender Sergio Reguilon had a hand in all three of his side’s goals, directly assisting for Bryan Mbeumo and Yoane Wissa on his first start since serving a suspension.

The Spaniard’s career in England has never really taken off since joining Tottenham from Real Madrid in 2020 but Thomas Frank thinks he might have found a home at Brentford.

“I was very pleased with his response,” he said. “I think Reggie is a very good player and he has proved that in his career.

“He needed a place to come to in Brentford where he will play and get the trust and opportunity to perform.

“I actually said to him when he came to us he will make six assists and two goals, and now he is on three assists so he needs to hurry up! But he hadn’t made an assist for one and a half years or something like that.

“I think he has had some very good games for us and obviously he was involved in the red card and penalty against Burnley, and a very good response today.”

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