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O'Neill challenges Downing
24 Feb 2010 - 09:14:36
Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill has urged winger Stewart Downing to continue to find the net, following his double in the 5-2 weekend thrashing of Burnley.
The 25-year-old England international had previously netted just once 18 games since his summer move from Middlesbrough and O'Neill wants to see Downing build on his recent success.
He said: "His confidence has been boosted with his two goals against Burnley. I think he has been doing very well for us without getting the occasional goal.
"That is the part of his game which he feels he can improve upon as he has a really good shot and I think his two goals against Burnley will have lifted him enormously.
"He is a confidence player and you can see the ability he has.
"I think he is able to contribute more in future in the way of goals after scoring against Burnley. He has a strong shot and we often see it in training.
"Overall, I am very pleased for him because I think some of his performances over the last couple of months have merited bigger notices than he was getting.
"His goalscoring form has come at a good time and I know the England manager has certainly said in the past how much he thinks of Stewart Downing. That will be very positive for him."