ASTON VILLA hero John McGinn once revealed that a fan had described him as “all elbows, as if I’m chasing a helicopter”.
Stamina and aggression, rather than elegance in play, are indeed his trademarks as the Manchester United target – who will cost £50million – himself said while introducing himself to Villa fans last summer.
Which was a very serendipitous signing from the start.
It was made possible thanks to a chance encounter between ex-Villa coach Steve Bruce and Hibernian boss Neil Lennon on holiday.
And, after Celtic ruled themselves out of the race for the midfielder having played the waiting game and haggling with Hibs for weeks.
McGinn was desperate to prove there is more to his game than just simply running.
And, arguably, so he did – sending the Wembley crowd roaring when he sealed Villa’s promotion back in May.
He got the better of Derby keeper Kelle Roos and capitalised on his fumble, heading the ball home to make it 2-0.
Passion. Willpower. Leadership. Villa fans know his strong sides now, proudly belting out “super John McGinn” as the song goes.
The 5ft 6in midfielder won them over getting his hands – and elbows – dirty behind Jack Grealish, allowing the Villa poster boy to shine.
They even came up with a flattering nickname for their new pupil. McGinniesta.
You can hardly appreciate a midfielder’s work more than to liken him to Barcelona and Spain legend Andres Iniesta, can you?
But coming from a truly sporting family, McGinn must have received the football gene.
Grandfather Jack is a former Celtic chairman and Scottish FA president.
And brothers Stephen and Paul are, too, professional footballers.
They celebrated keeping Scottish Premiership status with St Mirren after a penalty shoot-out in a play-offs thriller against Dundee in May.
So just a day before McGinn tucked away that scruffy goal worth £170million, sending Villa back to the Premier League.
John then revealed he was actually more nervous watching his siblings fighting for St Mirren’s survival than playing in the game of his life against Derby.
Perhaps he still has a soft spot for his boyhood club, where he was given his senior debut before making a name for himself at Hibernian.
But once the season came to an end, the three McGinn brothers went on to celebrate their footballing, and private-life, successes in Benidorm.
They partied in Spain on Stephen’s stag-do as he was just about to marry his fiancee Ashley in early June.
Scotland boss Steve Clarke had to begged John to lay off booze ahead of Euro 2020 qualifiers – even though he was the best man at the wedding!
But he must have been well-behaved as the midfielder started for Scotland in the 2-1 victory over Cyprus only days later.
Nothing but professionalism, after all, could have been expected from Villa’s Player of the Season.
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Professionalism that, alongside his talent, has now given him a chance to taste football’s creme de la creme.
McGinn might sometimes look like chasing a helicopter, but he does not need to chase his Premier League debut anymore.
He is all set to perform on the biggest stage, with Villa or elsewhere.
This post written by tgannon originally appeared on Football news - transfers, fixtures, scores, pictures | The Sun. Read the full post here.