Tyrone Mings stretchered off with knee injury 30 minutes into new season

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    Tyrone Mings and Aston Villa's Premier League season got off to a nightmarish start when defender Tyrone Mings left the pitch in tears as he was stretchered off with an apparent knee injury.

    A tussle with Newcastle striker Alexander Isak before the half-hour mark saw the former Villa captain come off second best and immediately go to ground as the Magpies man came away with the ball. However, it soon became clear all was not well with Mings as he failed to get back to his feet and medics rushed on.

    Villa's medical team took their time seeing to the England international, with opposition right-back Kieran Trippier among those signalling for a stretcher to be brought on. The scene grew increasingly desperate when Mings was seen in tears at his injury, which could well result in a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

    Summer signing Pau Torres came on to make his Premier League bow for Villa after joining from Villarreal. Goals from Sandro Tonali and Isak put Unai Emery's side on the back foot at St. James' Park when the injury occurred, with Moussa Diaby getting on the board for visiting Villa.

    READ MORE: Sandro Tonali 'already worth £55m' as he scores five minutes into Newcastle debut

    The blow marked a horrific restart for Mings, who was ever-present in Emery's back line last season as the Villans secured a seventh-place league finish. The 30-year-old will have been expected to play a key role for the team after qualifying for this term's Europa Conference League, but it's now doubtful as to whether he'll be available for the group stage.

    Depending on the severity of his injury, it may also force manager Emery back into the transfer market to source a replacement for the player. Mings featured in all but three of Villa's Premier League fixtures last season and is seen as a key member of the squad.

    It's not the first time the player has suffered a devastating knee injury early on in a Premier League campaign, either. Soon after joining Bournemouth from Ipswich Town in the summer of 2015, Mings marked his Cherries debut by suffering a similar blow just six minutes after coming on as a substitute.

    He was out of action for 15 months after that injury and didn't make his comeback until December 2016. Emery, his players and Villa's fans will all be hoping the damage isn't nearly as substantial this time around.

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    Newcastle manager Eddie Howe – who was Mings' coach throughout his stay at the Vitality Stadium – has previously praised the player for his 'mental toughness' after coming back from that first serious ACL injury. The centre-back rebounded to earn his first senior England cap in October 2019 following a resurgence in form at Villa Park.

    Mings will require plenty of that same determination as he looks to once again bounce back from another serious-looking setback eight years on. 

    More to follow.

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