Aston Villa boss McLeish: Downing Liverpool issue like me and Man Utd

Aston Villa boss Alex McLeish doesn't expect Stewart Downing to lose his rag if they continue to reject offers from Liverpool for him.

McLeish says he overcame failing to secure a move to Manchester United as a player and would expect the same response from Downing if he is still at Villa next season.

He said: "I've spoken to Stewart, I've told him I don't want to sell him.

"There's an obvious distraction there for him but he's been a credit to himself and applied himself in the right way and worked his socks off in training. I don't see a problem professionally.

"Sir Alex Ferguson wanted to sign me for Manchester United when I was at Aberdeen and that wasn't possible in the end.

"That was a big disappointment but I got my head down and worked and I don't doubt Stewart has the character to get through this is he stays at the club.

"It's part of your growing up as a footballer."

 
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