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Sherwood: Vlaar must prove himself

Published 02/04/2015

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood does not fear for his job despite takeover rumours
Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood does not fear for his job despite takeover rumours

Tim Sherwood has urged Ron Vlaar to prove himself again as the Aston Villa skipper prepares for his return.

Sherwood wants to see the fit-again defender help struggling Villa to a grandstand finish and warned him people may have forgotten his World Cup heroics.

Vlaar starred in the Netherlands' run to the semi finals in Brazil last year - despite missing a penalty in the last four shoot-out against Argentina - leading to links with Manchester United.

He played under Louis van Gaal in Brazil and will face his former international boss when Villa travel to Old Trafford on Saturday.

The 30-year-old is out of contract in the summer and, having shaken off a calf injury, Villa boss Sherwood wants Vlaar to rediscover his spark.

He said: "We all know what he has done over the years but when people are putting their hands in their pockets to fork out money, they want to know they are getting value.

"He was right up there with the best at the World Cup but people have short memories.

"You are always looking at what people are doing now rather than a few months ago.

"He will have far more options open to him if he is in the shop window that's for sure."

Vlaar has only made 12 Barclays Premier League starts this season following calf and knee problems as Villa, three points above the relegation zone, battle the drop.

His last game in February saw him concede a stoppage-time penalty and get sent off as Villa lost 2-1 to Stoke in Sherwood's first match.

And Sherwood has put any contract talks on hold with Vlaar in order to focus on keeping Villa in the top flight.

"He realises he needs to be playing. I haven't even bothered speaking to him. There's time for that when we are safe," he said.

"He is just concentrating on getting fit to play. Without getting on the pitch, he's not going to be an attractive proposition to anybody."

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