Gary Cahill believes his one-time Aston Villa team-mate Ashley Young "can play on any stage" after fully realising his potential at international level during the past month.

Central defender Cahill recognised Young's ability at England Under-21 level and then with Villa before he made the switch to Bolton three years ago. But it is only now that Young looks completely at home for his country with his performances against Denmark, Wales and latterly Ghana at Wembley on Tuesday night.

Cahill said: "You can see how much Ashley has developed even in the time from when I knew him at Villa. He looks at home on this stage now but, when you've got that ability, you can play on any stage."

He added: "He gets into little pockets of space and his awareness is outstanding.

"I thought he was brilliant against Wales and he had another good game against Ghana. His general awareness is good and he is such a threat.


 

"I sensed from Ashley's early days that he was going to be a special player.

"I saw him in the Under-21s and he was fantastic in that.

"You could see then as a talent he was only going to get better, and that is what he has done."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
Football
Bolton Wanderers
Premier League
Ashley Young
Aston Villa
Gary Cahill