By Paul Brown
Paul Lambert admits he's been thrilled with the performances of his young lions and believes they can grow into a "right strong side."
Lambert insists he's doing things 'My Way' after being asked in the pre-Manchester City press conference about his policy of blooding up-and-coming starlets.
Villa boss Lambert knows winning is everything in the cut-and-thrust of the Barclays Premier League but says he's also building for the future.
He said: "I think the young lads are all growing into it.
"If you look, the average age was very young for the Man Utd game but that is great for the future.
"If we keep growing together we'll have a right strong side. "It's my way. I'll not deviate from my way.
"It would always be my decision. Yes, I love to win but the project is long term.
"I know I need to get results but I'd rather a team that is giving everything. I know you take knocks, but it's how you come back from them.
"I couldn't ask for anymore, not just the effort they have given me but the way they have played. They have been excellent."
Lambert is a strong advocate of sending starlets out on loan to the lower leagues to give them a taste of senior football.
The experiences gained by the likes of Ashley Westwood and Matt Lowton are prime examples of this ethos.
He added: "I think those who have played senior football at a lower level? That will bode well.
"Daniel Johnson is at Yeovil and Courtney Cameron is at Rotherham.
"There's one or two out there and it will be an eye opener for them and it's a great upbringing, it really is.
"Ashley Westwood had a great upbringing at Crewe and came through in the past few games and looked like he's played there all of his life.
"I am talking about young players coming through from academies. Unless they are exceptional they won't got right into the first team.
"The majority of them have to learn their trade. You might have one or two who are exceptional but it won't do them any harm to play senior football. It's a great upbringing and bodes well for the future."
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