Jedinak offers helping hand to ease Lyden's pain

Injury-hit Australian midfielder Jordan Lyden has revealed how Aston Villa team-mate and Socceroos captain Mile Jedinak is helping him to deal with a set-back which will sideline him until Christmas.

Jordan Lyden Aston Villa Mile Jedinak

Aston Villa midfielder Jordan Lyden Source: Getty Images

Lyden, who signed a two-year extension at Villa Park this month, missed the whole of the 2014-2015 season with a hamstring injury and back-to-back quad injuries have limited the rookie to just three games for the club's under-21's so far this season.

Having made last season his breakthrough campaign with six appearances in all competitions as Villa dropped into the Championship, Lyden, 20, was heavily tipped to become a regular first team starter this season.

But injuries have bitten deep, with the kid from Perth - who first trained with Villa as a nine-year-old - now battling a thigh problem and new arrival Jedinak helping to ease his pain with words of encouragement.

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Lyden is harnessing Jedinak's intervention as extra motivation to push strongly for a place in new coach Steve Bruce's pecking order when he returns in eight weeks.

"It's great to have Mile at the club and we speak a lot, and have become quite close," said Lyden.

"He's sat me down and talked about the injury and basically said 'look, you are still young and you just have to get through it. You have a lot of years left on your career'.

"It's been good having somebody of Mile's stature in my corner, somebody who captains our national team.

"I obviously look up to him and he's an idol of mine, and his words are giving me that extra bit of motivation.

"When somebody like Mile comes to the club, especially being a fellow Australian, it's a massive boost for me and of course the team as a whole.

"It's a good feeling, and with him here and also the new gaffer now, everybody is trying to impress."

With the arrival of promotion specialist Bruce to replace Roberto Di Matteo, Lyden believes they can be in contention for the play-offs after a shaky start to the season.



"Hopefully now we can push on and get the results we need and return to the Premier League where this club belongs," he said.

Lyden, who skippers Villa's under 21's, believes that his boundless enthusiasm and total commitment may have had a bearing on his luckless run of injuries.

"I am a player who is always at it and gives 110 per cent, and maybe that's a factor in me getting these injuries," he said. "But hopefully in eight weeks or so I should be back and playing again."

Lyden broke down just a week after signing the new deal earlier this month which ties him to the club until mid-2019.

And he is backing himself to break back into the senior squad once fit again.

"I have no doubts about my ability and the club have told me they have no worries about me getting through this and pushing myself into the team," he added.

"I had a taste of it towards the end of last season by getting a few first team games under my belt, and now I need to keep progressing.

"I have been around the club for 12 years now and they have shown a lot of faith in me. I want to repay that."

 


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3 min read
Published 22 October 2016 at 9:05am
By Dave Lewis