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O’Neill praises Dunne’s Villa’s impact

October 22, 2009 • Soccer,

SOCCER Villa 15MARTIN O’Neill has praised the impact made at Aston Villa by defender Richard Dunne ahead of the clash with his former club Manchester City in the Barclays Premier League at Villa Park.
Dunne spent nine years with City after moving from Everton in 2000 but the arrival of Kolo Toure and Joleon Lescott during the summer transfer window saw him slip down the pecking order.
He finally made the move away from Eastlands in a £6m deal on the final day of the transfer window and has formed an impressive partnership with another newcomer in James Collins.
O’Neill said: “I am delighted with the new players that have come in. They have helped us shore up a few defensive frailties. I was delighted when Richard joined us. It was a difficult move. He was part of the furniture at Manchester City for a long time.
“He was their player of the year for four or five consecutive years and then suddenly he is surplus to requirements.
“We were delighted we finally managed to persuade him to come here. He had a few things to think about.
“Leaving Manchester City was obviously his biggest pang and actually coming to join us wasn’t a major decision, or so he said.
“I am very pleased and I think his experience and know-how will help – and is already helping – the rest of us out.”
O’Neill added: “I’ve liked his attitude. I’ve also liked James Collins and what he has done so far.
“I think he is a centre-half who can play the ball and we’ve felt a bit more comfortable at the back.
“As they bed in, they will get better. At the moment, it has worked out okay.”

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