James Collins was signed by Villa on a five-week at the end of November, taking him up until January, with Dean Smith using the Welsh international to provide cover at the back until Aston Villa could bring in another defender in the winter transfer window. Collins is yet to feature, however, and could leave the Midlands club in the New Year without playing a single game.
The centre-back has been training with Villa since September but still isn’t deemed fit enough to make the matchday squad. Instead, Dominic Revan was selected to be on the bench in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Stoke City. It begs the question of how fit Collins really is if he still isn’t featuring in any capacity.
Now 35, the former West Ham United defender is no spring chicken, but he was still playing Premier League football for the London club last season. The last of his 214 appearances for United came against Everton on May 13 so how badly must his condition have been to go seven months without playing.
With Revan now ahead of Collins in the pecking order, it seems likely that the veteran could be on his way out in January without playing a single minute unless injury strikes to James Chester or Axel Tuanzebe.