Baker: Villa showing maturity
Aston Villa's young defender Nathan Baker has stated his belief that Paul Lambert's side have 'come of age' since opting to play with three at the back.
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2. Nathan Baker
Villa are unbeaten since being forced into the tactical switch four games ago after Ron Vlaar sustained a calf injury in November's draw with Arsenal.
Since that time, 21-year-old Baker, 23-year-old Ciaran Clark and Chris Herd, also 23, have lined up together at the back and have overseen wins at Anfield in a 3-1 win over Liverpool, and at Carrow Road in a 4-1 victory against Norwich.
Baker said: "It's been good. There's a bit more security with three at the back. We are young lads who are still learning the game, but because we know each other well having grown up in the academy, we are quite familiar with each other's game so already have an understanding.
"At the moment it is a system that seems to be working for us and, as long as we keep getting results, it probably makes sense to stick with it.
"It has definitely been a bit of a coming-of-age week for us, reaching the cup semi-final and then beating Liverpool. A lot of young lads have won the reserve league so hopefully we can do it with the first team now."
Villa will learn their Capital One Cup fate in Wednesday's draw before facing Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League on Sunday.