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Given unhappy with bench role

Aston Villa goalkeeper Shay Given admits that he has found it ‘soul-destroying’ after losing his place in the starting line-up to Brad Guzan.

The 36-year-old shot-stopper has acknowledged that he must remind manager Paul Lambert that he still has what it takes to ply his trade at the top level, but conceded that he was not happy to sit on the bench.

“It is a tough one for the manager to pick one of us,” Given told the Irish Examiner.

“He has gone with Brad this season and it is has been difficult for me at times.

“I can’t stand here and say I’m quite happy to sit on the bench, because I’m not. When you work hard all week and, come matchday you are not playing, it can be soul-destroying.”

Having lost his place in the side, Given has found his appearances limited to cup games and he is hopeful that his performances can serve as a reminder of his abilities to Lambert.

“When I get the chance, it’s important I remind the manager that there is still plenty of life left in me and still plenty of years left ahead of me,” he said.

“Sometimes you sulk about it and have bad days like all people do, but the cup games have been a big carrot for me.”

Aston Villa face Bradford City in their League Cup semi-final first leg on Tuesday.

Tue 8 January, 2013
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