Ashley Young to sign new Aston Villa contract says Gerard Houllier

01 October 2010 03:35
Ashley Young is on the verge of signing a new long-term contract with Aston Villa.[LNB]Villa boss Gerard Houllier confirmed that Young will be tying up his new deal 'sooner rather than later', and he is expected to commit for four years.[LNB]Young, who has just under two years left of his current contract, has started the season in sparkling form.[LNB] Improved: Ashley young has added versatility to his skills this season, playing as a second striker as well as a winger[LNB]He has effectively switched from the wing into a second striker role behind Emile Heskey.[LNB]When asked about Young's new contract, Houllier said: 'The good news should come early, sooner rather than later.'[LNB]Young will tomorrow line up against Tottenham who were linked with trying to sign the player from Villa during the summer.[LNB]Houllier has challenged him to take his game to another level so he becomes an England regular rather than a squad player.[LNB]The former Liverpool boss said: 'Ashley, to me, has international qualities.[LNB]'He is clever, reads the game well, works hard, is quick, has got quick feet, can score goals, make goals, takes part in movements to prepare goals.[LNB] Coveted: Gerard Houllier considers Young international class, as does Spurs manager Harry Redknapp who tried to poach the forward in the summer [LNB]'Whether he can play for the national team is not down to me to say yes or no.[LNB]'All I know is that we want the player to step up another level because he is on the fringe of the international team.[LNB]'I want him to be a regular player (for England).[LNB]'If you are happy with your game, you are not going to improve. Youwill stay at the same level and then some players will overtake you.[LNB]Reborn: Nigel Reo-Coker has impressed Houllier so far but not enough to spark new contract talks[LNB]'But his involvement and dedication to what he does at training is really a good sign for the future for him.'[LNB]Houllier has been impressed with the form of midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker whose days at Villa had looked numbered after a falling-out with former manager Martin O'Neill.[LNB]Reo-Coker has been reinstated in his preferred central midfield role and was one of Villa's best players in last weekend's 2-1 win over Wolves at Molineux.[LNB]The 26-year-old is out of contract next summer and, although Houllier believes it is too early to talk about a new deal, he has been happy with his contribution.[LNB]Houllier said: 'I didn't know Nigel was at the end of the contract (next summer).[LNB]'But I've been here two weeks, he has played two games. He is in the team.[LNB]'It is too early to say whether he will sign a new contract or not but he brings something specific to the team which we needed.[LNB]'I know he had problems with the previous manager but sometimes that happens.'[LNB]Houllier is a big admirer of Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp and the job he has done in bringing Champions League football to White Hart Lane.[LNB] Impressive: Houllier watched Spurs in action against FC Twente in the Champions League [LNB]But he stressed the importance of his own team not being overawed by the opposition.[LNB]Houllier said: 'I saw them against FC Twente and they were impressive at times.[LNB]'It is a good attacking side and they really seem to enjoy their football. They finished fourth in the Premier League last season and have started well in the Champions League group.[LNB]'They are full of confidence but we will travel to them and give it our best shot.[LNB]'Sometimes the press talk more about the opposition. I came across that a couple of times (at Liverpool).[LNB]'Because of the name and prestige of the opposition, Milan or Barcelona, the press would talk more about them and forget about us.[LNB]'It was building up in the minds of the players that we were playing a monster or something very big.[LNB]'But if we are at that stage of the competition it is also because we have qualities and you have still got a chance, whatever the name of the opposition.'[LNB]Houllier added: 'I wanted to see Tottenham because they are a very good side but, when you see them, you see their strengths and weaknesses and football is about that.[LNB]'It is not just about seeing what problems teams can pose to you - but what you can pose to them.' Blow for Aston Villa as Gabriel Agbonlahor ruled out for two weeks following surgeryTOTTENHAM v Aston Villa: Ledley King to face late fitness test as defensive woes continueASTON VILLA FC

Source: Daily_Mail