Ashley Young makes ‘Europe’ claim about Aston Villa amid slow start

Ashley Young believes Aston Villa belong at a much greater level than where they are at this moment in time.

Ashley Young believes Aston Villa should be back in Europe as they look improve on a disappoint season of last.

It has been an interesting few years for Villa, who managed to return to the Premier League at the hand of Dean Smith before going on to enjoy an impresivve debut camapign.

But last season, we began to see some signs of regression, with Smith giving way to Gerrard after a disappointing start.

Even after Gerrard’s arrival, Villa struggled and had to settle for a bottom half finish.

But ahead of this season, there is fresh optimism after some serious invesment from the club’s owners, with signings aplenty brought in over the summer.

And veteran Young, who returned to the club after 10 years last year, believes the club belongs ‘back in Europe’.

“It was probably the easiest decision I’ve made,” Young told Sky Sports. “I know my love for the club.

“The size of the club; it’s growing, the ambition and the owners want to progress this club - it should be back in Europe.

“I’ve bought into that and, as soon as I was told about the club wanting to offer me another year, I was literally like, give me the pen, where do I sign?!”

Despite the optimism, it has been a disappointing start to the season for Villa, but there is reason to trust Gerrard, according to Young.

“He’s as ambitious, he’s got that winning mentality,” Young added.

Ashley Young keen to extend second stint at Villa beyond the summer

“He obviously worked under Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool. I think he’s spoken to, as I still call him, ‘The Boss’, Sir Alex (Ferguson), so I’d say he’s taken little bits and pieces from them - but he’s got his own ways as well.

“He knows how to deal with the players in the right way, whether they need an arm around them or a subtle telling off. His man-management skills are very good. At times you can laugh and joke, but when it’s training, it’s serious and that’s when it’s down to business.

“He’s got that aura about him, which he of course had as a player, and he’s now got that as a manager as well. He’s an ambitious person; he knows where he believes he can take the club to, and I think all the players have bought into that, and know that we can get higher and higher up the table.”