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Noisy neighbour Stevens ready to knock on first team door

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Noisy neighbour Stevens ready to knock on first team door

By Dan Harrison

Enda Stevens is ready to knock on Villa's first team door - after being a noisy neighbour to team-mates Andreas Weimann and Eric Lichaj.

The Irish full-back revealed Weimann and Lichaj have helped him feel at home as a Villa player following his January move from Shamrock Rovers.

Stevens moved into the same street as the duo and has become the latest claret and blues star to sample Lichaj's legendary culinary skills.

Now the 21-year-old wants to follow the lead of his near neighbours by breaking into Alex McLeish's first team squad.

He said: "I live just across the way from them so I have been pretty much living at their house and living off Eric Lichaj's cooking!

"It is true he makes a very decent steak, I'll give him that, although he is probably getting ahead of himself!

"But all the lads have been encouraging and have helped me settle in, including the senior lads.

"A lot of them are around my age and it is good to see that this club is giving a chance to young players.

"All they have to do is just keep proving that week in, week out, and they are doing that at the moment.

"I've just got to get my head down and train as hard as I can now and hopefully break into that first team."

Stevens feels he is getting to grips with the rigours of training at Premier League level, having made a "massive" step up from the League of Ireland.

He hopes his form in training and reserve matches will persuade Alex McLeish that he is ready for top-flight action.

"Training has been good and I am just putting my head down and working away," Stevens added.

"That is all I can do and try and prove to the manager that I am ready.

"It is a massive step-up coming here from the Irish league.

"The tempo is a lot better and the players you are playing against are a lot better.

"So I just had to adjust and get used to how tough the training is but I am getting there."

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By @AVFCOfficial 8th March 2012
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