Villa keeper Guzan: I love Friedel - but I want his spot!

Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan has paid tribute to teammate and fellow American Brad Friedel for his influence this season.

Guzan admits he has learnt a lot from Friedel since making a £2million move from Chivas USA 18 months ago.

But he is keen to make his own mark and has been chosen by Villa manager Martin O'Neill to play in the majority of cup games this season.

And, if O'Neill sticks with the policy, Guzan will appear in the Carling Cup final against Manchester United or Manchester City at Wembley on February 28.

Guzan said: "Brad has been superb, a true professional, in terms of the conversations we have off and on the field.

"He has helped me a lot and we have got a good working relationship and a good relationship off the field. He has been nothing short of fantastic. Do I want to replace him? I think in any business, any job, in anything you do, you are striving to get to the top.

"He knows that I am an up-and-coming goalkeeper who is trying to push for playing time and he respects that.

"I can make him better, he can make me better."

Guzan added: "It is the best league in the world and you have got world class players week in and week out.

"When you play against those guys, it is ultimately going to make you better. We've got loads of them in our dressing room and to train with them is fantastic."

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