Houllier has faith in Reo-Coker

07 October 2010 08:48
Gerard Houllier says he instantly recognised Nigel Reo-Coker's importance to Aston Villa after he was repeatedly overlooked by Martin O'Neill.[LNB] Former England Under-21 captain Reo-Coker's days at Villa looked numbered in the summer.[LNB]He had a training ground fall-out with O'Neill early last season and made only spasmodic appearances for the Midlands club.[LNB]But one of Houllier's first actions after taking charge last month was to restore Reo-Coker to the side and he has responded with some encouraging performances.[LNB]Houllier said: "Right away, I knew that I needed Nigel and I think he has done well for us.[LNB]"We needed someone who has got the grit to win the ball back for us.[LNB]"Nigel has got a specific job for the team and he is doing it well.[LNB]"Don't forget, he had hardly played since the beginning of the season before he came into the side."[LNB]Houllier has already stressed that it is too early to comment on any possible new contract for Reo-Coker, whose current deal expires in the summer.[LNB]But Villa midfielder Marc Albrighton admitted: "We definitely want to keep players like Nigel.[LNB]"He does the dirty work in the middle and then gives it to players who will create the chances for us.[LNB]"I think he had a bad couple of seasons when he wasn't enjoying his football but the gaffer now has given him a new lease of life."

Source: Team_Talk