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Baker: I'm growing in confidence as a top-flight defender
Nathan Baker vows to keep his place.
19th Dec 2012
Baker: I'm growing in confidence as a top-flight defender


Harrison

Nathan Baker is determined to cement his place in the centre of Villa's defence - after admitting he finally feels like a fully-fledged top-flight stopper.

Baker has impressed alongside fellow academy graduates Ciaran Clark and Chris Herd as part of a three-man defensive unit in recent weeks.

He is hoping to make his sixth consecutive appearance when Villa head to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea on Sunday.

The England U21 international has had brief spells in the first team over the past two seasons and also spent time on loan at Lincoln City and Millwall.

Now Baker is starting to feel at home in the Barclays Premier League.

"I do feel comfortable in the Premier League now, yes," he said.

"I've obviously been out on loan a few times which was great for experience when you are young.

"But I'm a part of the first team squad and playing at the moment so hopefully I can stay part of it and keep going.

"I don't think there is a set number of games you have play to before you say 'right, I'm a Premier League player now'.

"It's just a matter of taking them one by one. Obviously you want to keep playing and playing.

"The manager has obviously given me my chance to play so hopefully I can impress him and carry on."

Baker believes the strong spirit among the younger players at the club is vital in carrying Villa forward.

Lambert fielded six homegrown stars in Saturday's win at Anfield - all of whom played together at some stage in the reserves and youth ranks.

"We all grew up together and we all know what's what with each other so hopefully we can carry that on forwards," Baker added.

"The new lads have settled in really quickly as well."

Make sure you back the boys against Tottenham.


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