Vlaar: If we fight and keep the faith then results will come
Ron Vlaar knows it's a tough time for anyone who has their "heart" with Villa - but the skipper insists now is the time for the players to fight hard, keep the faith and pick up results.
Vlaar could well return to the side for the derby clash with West Brom after declaring himself fit for action after two months out with a calf injury.
And the captain spelled out exactly what needs to happen for Villa to push up the table and away from the danger zone.
He said: "It's hard. It's hard for everyone with the Villa heart.
"We have to try and keep the faith that the results will come. But we must know that doesn't happen by itself.
"We have to work hard. We have to train very well and believe. Then it will happen. I believe in that!
"There are a lot of points to win. We have to look to ourselves and get results. What the other teams do, that doesn't matter. We have to take care of ourselves. That's the most important thing. We don't have to look to the other teams.
"Looking back, we didn't deserve to lose the Southampton game.
"But that's the situation we're in now. We have to fight hard to come back.
"The spirit was good. That's where it all starts. I believe."
Vlaar is delighted to be back in contention to play after his minor calf problem became a troublesome issue and refused to clear up.
He added: "I was very happy to be back in the squad against Southampton.
"It took a long time for me to come back but the feeling of being back is great. The next step is to be playing. I am looking forward to that moment.
"It's been very difficult. It was crazy because it was only a small injury. But it took a long time to heal.
"That was really frustrating. I really wanted to play and help the lads but it just wasn't possible. I have had to be patient and wait until it's completely healed.
"My emotions have been up and down a lot of times. It looked better and then it was not. That happened a couple of times. You look forward to be playing again but that's not possible.
"You have to keep your head up and look forward and make steps forward.
"I am ready now because I had some extra conditioning training this week. I actually feel very good, fit and my muscles feel good. I look forward to playing again."
Check out the full interview with Vlaar on AVTV.
Go to full match coverage for West Brom 2 - 2 Aston Villa (17th January 2013) >
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