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Villa boss convinced Agbonlahor will make England breakthrough

Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill has told striker Gabby Agbonlahor to be patient over his ambitions to break into the senior England squad.

O'Neill said: "Gabby is getting stronger and better as a player. His ability to get the ball down and shield it from opposing players has really improved.

"He's really developed that part of his game. Gabby's time will come with England if he continues to play and develop the way he is doing.

"Everyone must be able to see the difference in him from this time last year when he had just broken into the team.

"Our midfielder Patrik Berger said to me after the West Ham game that he felt Gabby had come on leaps and bounds in terms of his improvement and that's great credit to the lad.

"Gabby wants to learn, wants to play and wants to do really well. He's got a driving ambition. He really works at his game.

"His strength is there for all to see, whereas he might have been a bit lightweight before.

"He's got the pace so he knows he can get beyond people, but it's his ability to hold the ball which has most surprised people.

"I saw it at the back end of last season and he's improving all the time."

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