Feature by Paul Brown
Marc Albrighton is the darling of the claret and blue faithful because of his love for the club - but he's no longer the biggest Villa fan in his family!
Albrighton grew up on a diet of Steve Stone, Paul Merson, Dion Dublin and Juan Pablo Angel as his affiliation from the Holte End grew week by week, month by month, year by year.
This connection to B6 has made him a big favourite with the masses but his nine-month-old daughter, Matilda-Beau, is showing signs of trumping his support.
"She's got a few Villa shirts already," said Marc. "Me and Chloe got her last season's home kit but now she's got the home and away kit for this season too.
"The first time she wore the home top was against Everton and we lost so obviously for superstitious reasons we kitted her out in the away top for the Swansea game and we won!
"So she's glowing in the dark at the moment! She likes watching Villa on the television and she knows when daddy is on, she points at the screen.
"She loves the Villa badge on the kit too, she's always kissing it and grabbing it. It's really taken her fancy. She's already in love with Villa. She obviously knows who to support!"
Regardless of who she follows, it's clear Albrighton is a new man thanks to his new bundle of fun.
He may only be 23 but he's matured immensely over the past few months.
He's no longer a young lion. Now he's a young father - and loving it.
"Family life is just tremendous. I love it so much. It's fantastic," he continued. "It's just so different. To have Matilda Beau in my life is amazing.
"When I get home from training, she's there smiling. She takes my mind off things. If I haven't performed that well at training or I've had a bad day at the office, my mood soon drifts away when I see her waiting for daddy.
"It's the best thing that's ever happened to me. She's wonderful."
The elative boost is certainly something that's echoed in the weekly schedule of training at Bodymoor Heath.
Albrighton admits it's a pleasure to make his way into Bodymoor each morning because of the competitive edge in the build-up to games.
He's thrilled with the atmosphere generated by Paul Lambert and his staff, including Ian Culverhouse and Gary Karsa.
"It's exciting times. The gaffer has been terrific," he added. "He's set his stall out straight away. The lads totally respect him.
"The gaffer is not scared of making changes. That's the fantastic thing about him as a boss. If you don't play well, you're out of the team. And how can you argue with that?
"He has that honesty. I know he's said he simply picks a team to win a game every weekend. Spot on.
"He watches training and obviously thinks about what will best serve the football club that particular weekend.
"He has no favourites. He's totally focused on what's best for getting results.
"The competition for places is really electric. That's what you need.
"Training is great too. It's very enjoyable. We work on the technical side of the game a lot more - passing, crossing - it's important in this day and age.
"I feel we're really developing and progressing as a squad. We've put in some great performances. I know results haven't gone our away overall. But we really do feel like things are close to clicking."
Make sure you're here to back the lads against Reading.
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