Warnock poised for Villa recall
Alex McLeish has praised Stephen Warnock's professional attitude as he prepares to reinstate him to the starting line-up.
Last Updated: 29/01/12 12:24pm
Aston Villa boss Alex McLeish has praised Stephen Warnock's professional attitude as he prepares to reinstate him to the starting line-up.
Villa travel to Emirates Stadium on Sunday where they will face Arsenal in an eye-catching fourth round FA Cup tie.
The former Liverpool left-back was left out of the derby clash against Wolves last week, before being brought on at half-time to help nullify the threat of Michael Kightly.
That display convinced the Villa manager that the two-cap England international is the man to thwart to incisive pace of Gunners winger Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
"A lot of players throw the dummy out. Stevie might have been aggrieved but he never showed it publicly," McLeish said in The People.
"I told him 'we need you for the second half' and he got his shin guards on and played a stormer.
"I've not sat down and done psychology with him but I saw a positive reaction and that was tremendous. A lot of players may have said 'I don't want to play'.
"I've seen a lot of that attitude in the modern day but he handled it well."
Warnock's display clearly left an imprint on the former Birmingham manager who insists it's down to players to get back in and retain their place in the side.
"Stephen had a very good 45 minutes and I always say players get themselves in and out of the team, so he has not done himself any harm with that performance of composure," he added.
"Oxlade-Chamberlain is one of the most exciting young players in the country although I think we've got a pretty good one in Marc Albrighton, too."