Guzan sets sights on starting berth

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Aston Villa back-up goalkeeper Brad Guzan has hailed the influence of Brad Friedel - and vowed to eventually replace his fellow American between the posts at the Premier League club.

Guzan will make a rare start for Villa in Thursday's home UEFA Cup clash with MSK Zilina. He also appeared in the single goal victory over Slavia Prague last month when Friedel was again rested by Villa boss Martin O'Neill.

He said: "I have learnt so much from Brad Friedel. I can't put into words how much. To be working with him day in and day out, to be able to pick his brain and watch him in training and games is huge."

He added: "I'm a young goalkeeper who's only been over here for a few months and being involved with him can only make me a better goalkeeper.

"You don't want an environment where he's bitter towards me and I am bitter towards him. As a keeper, only one can play and we have a good atmosphere between us.

"But one day I want to take his place. That is the plan. My job is to make it difficult for the manager when it comes to selecting his starting 11.

"If I am able to do that, and have done everything I can, then the rest is up to him. Any time you step onto the field you have to prove you belong there, deserve to stay there and for me it is no different.

"When you get a chance, you don't want to let go of it. You want to be on the pitch for the big games."

O'Neill has been pleased with the way Guzan has adapted to life in England following his summer transfer.

He said: "I'm really pleased with Brad. He's got a great attitude and wants to do the business. He doesn't want to sit back on his laurels. He wants to push Brad Friedel and if anything happened to him, I would have no qualms about playing Brad Guzan. I think he is more than capable."

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Brad Guzan
Premier League
Brad Friedel
Aston Villa

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