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Laursen: Vlaar key to Aston Villa´s hopes

16 June 2013 12:38

Former Aston Villa defender Martin Laursen has hailed the club's current captain Ron Vlaar and believes he is crucial to the team's success.

Ex-Denmark international Laursen feels Vlaar will be vital for Paul Lambert's side next season, adding that the Dutchman's experience can help Jores Okore - who signed for Villa from Nordsjaelland earlier this month - settle in to life in the Premier League.

"I have said before that I think it is important to have somebody experienced in defence, more than in any other part of the team and I still think that is what is needed at Villa," he told the Birmingham Mail.

"You could see that last season when Ron Vlaar came back from injury and helped the defence settle down a bit and after that they started to win matches.

"Okore can become a good player at Villa, but they had already have young defenders like Ciaran Clark and Nathan Baker who need someone older to learn from and help them.

"So I hope Vlaar is able to concentrate on his own game and try to make the younger players like Okore get better and better."

Laursen spent the last five years of his career with Villa before his retirement, and also played for Milan in a career in which he earned 53 international caps.

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