Laursen Blog: Former skipper assesses Villa's new Danish recruits
Martin Laursen on the signings of Jores Okore and Nicklas Helenius.
19th Jun 2013
Laursen Blog: Former skipper assesses Villa's new Danish recruits


I've had a lot of journalists ringing me over the past couple of days because of the two Danish boys Aston Villa have signed.

It has created a lot of excitement and interest in Denmark, seeing Jores Okore and Nicklas Helenius join a big Premier League club and everybody is hoping that things will work out well for them.

Both players are highly respected in Denmark and they are good signings for Villa.

We must remember they are young boys so we can't expect them to come in and start dominating straight away.

They will need time to get used to the tempo and the English way but I think they will go on to become very good Aston Villa players.

Okore is a strong, fast centre-back who has played really well in Denmark over the past two seasons.

He is in the national team squad and he also got some experience playing in the Champions League with FC Nordsjaelland last season.

Jores Okore

People in Denmark are expecting good things from him and although I don't know him personally he seems like a really nice guy.

He comes across as a guy who has his feet on the ground and wants to work hard.

You can tell he isn't the sort of guy who thinks he has made it just because he has joined a big Premier League club.

It is too easy for him now in Denmark even though he is only 20 and it is good for him to go to the Premier League.

It will suit his game and it will good for him to be tested in English football.

Helenius is another player who has done very well in Denmark.

As well scoring goals in the Superliga, he has spent a little bit of time with the national team too. He is a tall player who can finish very well.

Like Okore, he is very young and will also need some time to adapt to the Premier League.

Although a lot has been made about his height, it is not just about his size and physical presence.

Nicklas Helenius

You can get the ball down and play football with him in your team, just as you can with Christian Benteke who is also a big, strong forward.

His arrival should create a lot of competition among the forwards.

It is important that he takes the first year to learn as much as he can.

If I was offering advice to the new boys, I would say be willing to learn every day and be proud of being at Aston Villa.

Enjoy it, be proud of playing in the Premier League and try to make the most if it.

I think those things are important because in the Danish league we see a lot of players go abroad and then return a year or so later as perhaps they were satisfied with just being there.

Helenius and Okore can go to Aston Villa and have great careers because it is a great place to be and it is a fantastic club.

You have everything at Villa and it is all about making the most of it.

Snap up your season tickets for 2013-14.

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