There aren’t many players to have suffered such a rise and fall like Aston Villa left-back Matt Targett this season, going from being an influential player to surplus to requirements in just a matter of months, and Kevin Phillips believes he’s been mistreated by Steven Gerrard.

The 26-year-old was voted Aston Villa Players’ Player of the Year for 2020/21 but was loaned out to Newcastle United eight months later after struggling for consistency. Targett featured in 17 of Villa’s first 21 Premier League games of the campaign but was dropped after Lucas Digne was signed from Everton.

After being an unused substitute for two games, Targett opted to move on from Villa Park and Newcastle were an attractive proposition. The former England U21 international has played in six of Newcastle’s seven league games since making the switch and looks a brilliant acquisition.

Phillips noted how one man’s junk can be another man’s treasure but also believes the left-back was hard done-by. He told Football Insider: “Matt Targett, he can count himself unlucky, he got player of the season at Villa and then they let him go.

“We know he’s a good player and he just needs a run of games which is what he’s getting at Newcastle. I can see him playing in that position for Newcastle for a long while.” Targett will return to Villa when his loan spell is up, but he could leave permanently this summer.

The 26-year-old is performing so well for Newcastle that he’s being tipped to represent England eventually. He won’t achieve that goal by sitting on the bench at Villa.

In other news, Gregg Evans says Jacob Ramsey is nearing an England call-up