Yacouba Sylla is as hard as nails.
That's the verdict of Gabby Agbonlahor, who has been impressed with the midfielder's no-nonsense approach since joining in January.
Agbonlahor says Sylla is a tough nut to crack in training at Bodymoor Heath.
Villa's star striker believes that Sylla is perfect for a fearsome enforcer role in the central ground.
He said: "I have been really impressed with what I have seen of Yacouba.
"He's a hard man, no doubt about that. He's the hard man in the squad. He's even harder than Ron Vlaar!
"He gets really stuck in during training. He's really, really strong. He puts himself about.
"He's full of enthusiasm. He wants to do well and he wants to win every tackle.
"It's good to have him with us at Villa. He's a good character too and a good guy. He's settled in well."
Agbonlahor believes Sylla is adapting all the time to the rigours of the Barclays Premier League and could slot in immediately if required by boss Paul Lambert.
He added: "People have pointed out he's come from the French Second Division but that doesn't matter at all.
"There have been loads of cases of players making their mark quickly after moving up the leagues. It doesn't matter to him.
"He's definitely good enough. And he can certainly make an impact if selected to play.
"He hasn't played much football yet for us. He's adapting to the tempo.
"He'll come on loads once he gets games under his belt. I am sure he will be a big asset."
Snap up match tickets for the Man City clash.