Aston Villa’s Stephen Ireland back to his best, claims Alex McLeish

Alex McLeish describes Stephen Ireland as "a revelation" as the Aston Villa midfielder continues to impress at Villa Park

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff
alex mcleish
Aston Villa are currently in 15th place in the Premier League table Photo: Christian Constantine

alex mcleish

Alex McLeish believes Aston Villa midfielder Stephen Ireland is starting to replicate the form that saw him crowned Manchester City’s Player of the Year in 2009.

The 25-year-old moved to Villa Park from City in an £8m deal in August 2010, but the former Republic of Ireland international struggled to make an impact and was loaned out to Newcastle United in January 2011.

Ireland has impressed since returning to Villa at the start of this season, building on his match-winning performance in the club’s 3-1 victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in December.

“Ireland has been a revelation in the last few weeks,” McLeish told Villa’s website.

“Robbie Keane came in when Steven got injured and it was hard for him to get back in that position.

“But when you are playing in the form he is playing in, then moving him out to the left is not a hardship because his confidence looks as if it is back and he came in off the side and played extremely well.

“When Steven is in form like that, he can play anywhere.

“You see the slide tackles, dispossessing people – I thought he was really good on one to ones when he didn’t have the ball.

“He is very good at the moment and long may that continue.

“From what I’ve seen the last couple of weeks, and just before Robbie Keane came in, I’m thinking Stevie is starting to look like the player he was at Man City.”

MORE:

MORE: The latest football transfer news

MORE: Meet the Premier League's most stylish footballers

MORE: Do you know the top Muslim footballers in the Premier League?

MORE: Man United latest news

MORE: Arsenal latest news

MORE: Chelsea latest news

MORE: Liverpool latest news

The Sport Review
Nitto ATP Finals: Edgy Federer goes 3/3, as debutant Sock survives Zverev thriller to reach SF
The Sport Review
Top 50 most stylish footballers in the world in 2017: Arsenal, Man United, Chelsea, Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Top 40 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man United stars feature
The Sport Review
Top 25 footballers’ cars: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Real Madrid players feature
The Sport Review
Top 20 Nigerian footballers in Premier League: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Arsenal player wages 2017: Do you know how much Xhaka, Ozil and Coquelin earn each week?
The Sport Review
Nitto ATP Finals: Goffin surges through Thiem to set semi showdown with Federer
The Sport Review
Alexandre Lacazette sends message to Man United fans about Anthony Martial
The Sport Review
Nitto ATP Finals: Grigor Dimitrov dominates day of debutants to seal semi-final place