Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill's policy to build for the future has been given another boost by the news that talented defender Ciaran Clark has inked a new deal at the club.
Clark, 20, is hotly tipped to be a future Premier League star and the news that he will remain at Villa Park until at least 2011 is sure to be greeted with huge approval from the Villa faithful.
O'Neill hasn't been shy in blooding Clark and he made his debut for The Villains earlier on this season against Roy Hodgson's Fulham.
With the likes of Richard Dunne and James Collins currently ahead of the starlet in the Villa Park pecking order, Clark knows he will have to be patient to earn first team opportunities but he is prepared to wait to succeed in the Midlands.
The stopper revealed his delight at the new contract, and just how useful it has been for him working with the first team squad at Villa.
"When you are training with defenders like Richard Dunne and Carlos Cuellar, it is a massive help.
"They really encourage you and, if you make mistakes, they keep your head up.
"I've been with Villa since I was 12. It was great to make my Premier
League debut and I hope I can push on and do well for Villa.
"I'm grateful and thankful for the new contract and now I'm going to knuckle down and work hard."