Villa U19 v Olympiacos U19: Carruthers relishing senior role
Samir Carruthers is relishing his role as the senior man in Villa's NextGen Series campaign.
Carruthers has been one of Villa's standout performers since the prestigious European U19 competition launched last season and he is hoping to drive Tony McAndrew's team on to another success in Wednesday's quarter-final against Olympiacos.
The 19-year-old midfielder has also been the closest to making a first team breakthrough, having appeared as a substitute three times in the Barclays Premier League.
He has enjoyed the extra responsibility placed on his shoulders this term.
"Because we played in it last year, Tony McAndrew and Sean Verity look towards the likes of me Burkey, Mikey Drennan and Derrick Williams as the experienced ones to help the new players who are playing in this competition for the first time," said Carruthers.
"They want us to drive them on and help them in certain situations.
"When we played Ajax in the last round we went ahead and I thought we did really well in showing a bit of experience to see it through.
"We played the game properly and managed to see it out.
"They didn't look like scoring and they kept giving the ball away because they were getting frustrated."
After consecutive away matches against Sporting Lisbon and Ajax, Carruthers is looking forward to experiencing the support of the Villa Park faithful against Olympiacos.
He has fond memories of the vociferous home crowd when Villa faced Marseille at this stage of the tournament last season.
"We haven't played there for a while and our last two games in the NextGen Series have been away so it will be good to get back out there again," he added.
"We're looking forward to getting back on that pitch in front of our home crowd and hopefully the supporters can help us.
"Hopefully we get a good turnout because they can help us as well.
"Last year when we played Marseille there were a few thousand at the stadium and it was a big boost for us."
Be there to cheer on the team against Olympiacos.