Aston Villa season in review: Jonathan Kodjia

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 11 : Jonathan Kodjia of Aston Villa scores his second goal for Aston Villa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Sheffield Wednesday at Villa Park on March 11, 2017 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images)
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 11 : Jonathan Kodjia of Aston Villa scores his second goal for Aston Villa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Sheffield Wednesday at Villa Park on March 11, 2017 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images) /
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Jonathan Kodjia carried Aston Villa from title hopefuls, to the brink of relegation, and all the way back to near promotion. He and his 19 goals were there for every moment this season.

ST – Jonathan Kodjia, 27

Appearances: 36

WhoScored Aggregate: 7.14

Goals/Assists: 19/1

It’s fair to say Aston Villa would be in a far worse state if it were not for Jonathan Kodjia. Kodjia signed under Roberto Di Matteo on the day before transfer deadline day. A cool £11 million reluctantly allowed Bristol City to give up their talisman forward.

Kodjia, 27, became a full-fledged Ivory Coast international at Villa this campaign. He featured in every match in the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations that saw the ‘Golden Elephants’ bail out in the group stage.

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Not only was Goal-djia highly productive, but he was a symbol of reliability until the final three matches. He started four matches with Bristol City to start the year, missed three weeks through AFCON competition, and accumulated a red card suspension the second-to-last match of the year. In all, though, he started 36/46 for Aston Villa.

To everyone’s despair Jonathan Kodjia broke his leg on the final match of the season. The break keeps him out for several months. He will more likely than not miss the first six weeks or so of next year – a horrific blow for Steve Bruce’s squad looking to start out quickly.

Not only was Kodjia absolutely incredible, but the Ivorian has a lot of room to grow too. Kodjia was a below-average passer as a the number nine and committed far too many offside runs. Clean those up and he can get 20+ league goals easily.

2017-2018 Prediction: Despite missing the first month, Jonathan Kodjia easily surpasses 20 league goals with better service from his teammates. He becomes the first player to score 20 goals (league play) in a season for Villa since Peter Withe.