Stephen Ireland has set his sights on earning a new contract at Aston Villa after claiming to being rejuvenated since the arrival of Paul Lambert as manager.

The midfielder still has two years remaining of the deal he signed when he moved from Manchester City during the summer of 2010. But Ireland is keen to impress Lambert during the current campaign and secure his long-term future at Villa Park, and is relishing being part of a diamond formation.

Ireland, who set up Villa's opening two goals in their midweek 3-0 Capital One Cup triumph over Tranmere, said: "I am enjoying playing under Paul Lambert, absolutely. He is a really good guy and fair and honest. He definitely knows what he is doing and talking about and he has been really impressive to me and I'm hoping I can play under him for as long as possible."

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