"I feel the same about Gareth Barry. That should be a big ambition for both of them. It's probably the hardest part of the squad to break into but I believe they can both do it.
"It sounds like I'm talking about the future, but Nigel is no longer eligible for the Under-21s.
"The only way he can achieve it is by playing well for Villa and putting us into a decent bracket where the England manager cannot afford to ignore form. It might be OK for him to play well in a side who are mediocre, but if he and Barry are driving us on and we're doing well, it's a different proposition.
"It's been important to me to keep a core of Britishness about the team, and it's very exciting to see the potential of some of the other young lads we have, like Young and Agbonlahor."