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Steven Gerrard: Tim Iroegbunam needs to find his Aston Villa voice

Steven Gerrard has told Tim Iroegbunam to turn up the volume after tipping the teenage midfielder for a big future at Villa.

Ethan Ingram of West Bromwich Albion and Tim Iroegbunam of Aston Villa
Ethan Ingram of West Bromwich Albion and Tim Iroegbunam of Aston Villa

Iroegbunam was handed his full Premier League debut in last weekend’s 2-0 win over Norwich and Gerrard is willing to give the 18-year-old further opportunities if he keeps performing.

But the boss is also mindful the former Albion academy ace is taking his first steps in senior football and believes becoming a louder voice in the dressing room is one of the next stages of his development.

Gerrard said: “Every day is vital for Tim. He’s a real good professional, he needs to find his voice and come out of his shell.

“He needs to realise he is a first team player now, use his voice more he needs to keep pushing himself on a daily basis.

“He’s got all the attributes to be a top Premier League player in my opinion. We’ll keep working and developing him.”

Iroegbunam made two substitute appearances before making his first start against the Canaries and Gerrard added: “You have to take into consideration that he’s a baby in football terms.

“He wasn’t with this group when we arrived, he was still with the U23s and it’s us who promoted him into the first team.

“He is still building relationships and getting used to the intensity from a training point of view.

“He’s got a really exciting future in front of him and he needs to take confidence and belief with the trust and opportunity he has had in the last few weeks. There will be plenty more for him moving forward if he keeps training consistently well.”

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