Select a Team

Delph told to justify fee

McLeish wants injury-prone teen to live up to expectations

Last Updated: 06/07/11 11:20am

  • Share:
Delph: The midfielder is currently recovering from an ankle injury

Delph: The midfielder is currently recovering from an ankle injury

Sky Bet

New Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish wants injury-prone Fabian Delph to justify his £6million price tag.

The now-21-year-old moved to Villa Park in August 2009 with the reputation of a star in the making following his emergence at Leeds.

But Delph has suffered from a number of injuries and ahead of Villa's return to pre-season training on Friday he is currently recovering from an ankle problem.

McLeish, who took over earlier this summer after a controversial switch from derby rivals Birmingham, has consequently challenged the midfielder to fulfil his potential.

The Villa boss, who has lost Ashley Young to Manchester United, while Stewart Downing is a target of Liverpool, said: "I think it's time for Fabian Delph to show the reason why Villa invested a decent sum of money on a very young player.

Massive boost

"The challenge is there for Fabian. He can certainly tackle as well as pass the ball. He's got that quality.

"He's got a determined attitude and believes in himself."

McLeish will use pre-season to determine whether Delph is ready for the Premier League.

He said: "We'll get a good idea in pre-season and will assess him then. I have to assess if he is ready for the Premier League.

"But for him, after his injury problems, to get a full season would be a massive boost to his mental toughness."

  • Share:

Related

Related Profiles

Most Popular

Features

Mourinho's youth record

Mourinho's youth record

Jose Mourinho's record with young players has been criticised, but what is the reality?

King Cantona at 50

King Cantona at 50

As Eric Cantona turns 50, we pick out 50 reasons why he was the king of Old Trafford.

Jose's first games in charge

Jose's first games in charge

We look at what will be Jose Mourinho's first games in charge of Manchester United.