Transfer news

Vlaar already looking to next season

May 22, 2013
By Ian Edwards

Ron Vlaar wants Aston Villa to utilise the experience gained from this season's relegation battle in the Premier League, as the club weigh up their summer transfer targets ahead of the 2013-14 term.

Ron Vlaar Aston Villa
GettyImagesVlaar signed for Villa from Feyenoord last summer

Villa manager Paul Lambert and owner Randy Lerner are preparing a transfer budget to strengthen the squad following the narrow escape from dropping into the Championship.

Lambert has an experienced central defender on his wishlist with Manchester City's Joleon Lescott one of the leading targets and is also ready to revive his long-standing interest in Ipswich Town defender Aaron Cresswell.

It is believed Lambert will be looking to add around four new players, while offloading the older guard of Darren Bent, Stephen Ireland, Shay Given and Alan Hutton.

Captain Vlaar believes the summer transfer activity at Villa Park will be crucial and the club have to learn the harsh lessons of spending the last six months battling against relegation.

The Dutch defender feels a club of Villa's tradition and stature should be aiming to achieve more than merely survive in the top flight and have to do better.

"The club is too big to go down. The team was too good to go down and we didn’t deserve to go down. It’s what we earned with our performances towards the end,” Vlaar said.

"But it is important that we must not take next season easily because every team can go down if you are not performing. It can happen to everyone.

"Personally, it’s been a hard season, mentally and physically, because it’s all new but I learned a lot. I’m really looking forward to the new season with all the experience I’ve taken."

Vlaar believes Lambert's squad will improve for the experience and be better equipped to deal with the Premier League next season.

"If you look at the first eleven which has started the most, Gabby Agbonlahor is the only player who has played in the Premier League regularly before. The rest it’s our first season.

"We learned a lot and our results became a lot better towards the end and we can improve on that."